Mumbai: There was a breather for Maharashtra Social Justice Minister Dhananjay Munde after a core committee of the Nationalist Congress Party decided not to seek his resignation amid the controversy over rape charges made by a singer. The NCP decision was taken at the core committee’s meeting on Thursday night at the residence of veteran party leader Praful Patel.
NCP chief Sharad Pawar insisted that the complaints against the same woman by various political party leaders, including Munde, needed to be probed by a female officer of the rank of assistant commissioner of police.
Munde has refuted the rape charges, accusing the woman of 'blackmail', while admitting to having a relationship with the victim's sister, with whom he has two children.
‘’We have full faith in Mumbai Police. Let them do their investigation first. Whenever the facts in the investigation come out, we will think of probable action. I want an ACP-level woman officer to investigate this case, to bring out the facts,’’ said Pawar.
‘’On Thursday, when I commented on the Dhananjay Munde issue, I had said that it was a serious issue. But at that time some facts were not in public domain. I learnt that there were similar complaints against the same woman by different political leaders (BJP leader Krishna Hegde & MNS leader Manish Dhuri). So, the matter must be probed,’’ he noted.
Pawar’s statement comes after BJP leader Krishna Hegde, a former Congress legislator, had filed a complaint against the woman at the Amboli police station, for honey-trapping and blackmailing him since 2010.
Further, Pawar said the possibility of injustice being meted out to someone if the matter were not probed in detail could not be ruled out. ‘’The party is waiting for the outcome of the investigatione. I have full confidence that Mumbai Police will get to the truth,’’ he noted.
Pawar also took a swipe at the BJP for making repeated allegations against NCP leaders like Munde and Nawab Malik. He attributed this to its restlessness after losing power in Maharashtra.
“I can understand the restlessness of those who have lost power. I don’t see it as different from targeting those because of whom they feel they lost power,” he added.