In the wake of a series of allegations hurled at Shiv Sena and her by Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leader Kirit Somaiya, Mumbai's Mayor Kishori Pednekar, on Friday, issued a statement that the accusations are false and baseless. Pednekar has openly challenged Somaiya and his party leaders in the BrihanMumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) to prove all the allegations they have made against her and her son.
The former member of the parliament (MP) had accused Pednekar of taking over two tenements —one for residential purposes and the other to run her family business. He visited Governor Bhagat Singh Koshyari last month and submitted documents to support his allegations against the Mayor.
Pednekar, however, claimed they have been rented, but Somaiya contended that they cannot be rented out. Somaiya has alleged that Pednekar has misused her power as a mayor and a civic corporator to fraudulently take over tenements in a redeveloped slum scheme.
He has even filed a complaint with Nirmal Nagar Police in Bandra (E) against minister Anil Parab for an alleged illegal construction on Maharashtra Housing and Area Development Authority (MHADA) property and against Pednekar for corrupt practices.
Somaiya, on September 17, met BMC Municipal Commissioner Iqbal Singh Chahal and lodged a complaint against Pednekar for indulging in alleged corrupt practices, false declaration and misleading statements regarding her residential and commercial premises and businesses. Somaiya had handed over the complaint letter with supporting documents to the municipal commissioner, demanding inquiry and action against Pednekar for being involved in alleged corrupt practices. In his letter, he claimed that Pednekar had misused her position as mayor and had illegally captured and occupied a Slum Rehabilitation Authority (SRA) premises, which was meant for poor slum dwellers. She has also benefited her family by giving the BMC’s contract to her family members.
In a video shared with the media, Pednekar rubbished the allegations, called them baseless, and challenged Somaiya to prove his claims. She said, "All he is doing is trying to defame the post of mayor and defame me. But he will never be successful. He should prove that my family members or me (Pednekar) are the authorised signatory in the said company. If so, get the proof in the public domain. Also, prove the allegation of corruptions made against me. I am transparent and have nothing to hide. Not like BJP leaders who are working on the lines of kahin pe nigahen, kahin pe nishana (looking in one direction and aiming elsewhere). We are committed towards working for Mumbaikars and we will do that lifelong," the Mayor said.