A day after being interrogated by the Enforcement Directorate (ED) for 10 hours in a money-laundering case, Shiv Sena MP Sanjay Raut made a sensational claim – that he had received an offer from the rebel camp led by Eknath Shinde to reach Guwahati but had rejected it. “However, I did not go, as I consider myself a true Balasaheb Thackeray loyalist,” he declared.
Raut claimed that the Shiv Sena MLAs, led by Eknath Shinde had staged a revolt, fearing action from the ED.
“The agency’s job is to investigate. Our job is to cooperate with their investigation. I came because they called me today, and I will continue to cooperate with the ED,” he said. “When the truth is on my side, why should I be afraid?” he asked. “As a responsible citizen and an MP, it is my duty to be present if I am summoned by the ED. I can go again if needed,” said Raut.
The case is about an alleged scam in the redevelopment of a housing complex named Patra Chawl. In April, the ED had attached his family’s properties too, in the case.
Raut, who has been under attack from the Shinde camp for fuelling a rift in the party, has accused the BJP for its tactics to reduce the strength of Shiv Sena in Mumbai by holding the Shinde camp to ransom. “It was a BJP ploy to reduce the Shiv Sena’s strength in Mumbai,” he opined.
Raut said that the party president, Uddhav Thackeray, has already clarified that Eknath Shinde was not a Shiv Sena chief minister. “The Shinde camp is misleading the people and the members of that camp have a feeling in their mind that they have deceived the party chief (Uddhav Thackeray). The BJP also uses similar machinations to deceive the people. Thus, the party MLAs who have defected are behaving like the BJP,” he added.