Less than a fortnight after he filed an FIR against three staffers of his gas agency in Mira Road for committing a financial fraud, Palghar MP- Rajendra Gavit has landed into trouble after one of the female booking clerk, accused him of seeking sexual favours in exchange of providing financial support to her and her family.
Notably, both the FIR’s have been registered at the Naya Nagar police station in Mira Road. In her complaint to the police, the 38-year-old woman who has been working at the gas agency in Mira Road since 2004 has alleged that the MP repeatedly sought sexual favours and even molested and threatened her in front of the entire staff during a heated exchange of words last month.
Based on the complaint, the Naya Nagar police registered an offence under sections 354 A (sexual harassment) and 506 (criminal intimidation) of the Indian Penal Code against Gavit on Friday.
Refuting the charges as baseless and an act of revenge, Gavit said, “The trio including the manager and this woman who worked as a booking clerk at my agency were caught red handed while diverting LPG cylinders to the black market, following which I duly informed the police and they were booked for the crime on 1, December. They have been indulged in such acts since 2015 and have committed a fraud to the tune of more than Rs. 1 crore. Now, to extract revenge the woman has filed this frivolous complaint. I also suspect a political conspiracy to malign my image. Moreover, I was not even aware of the FIR registered against me.”
However, police said that FIR against the MP followed in response to the woman’s official written complaint, the due process of investigations will follow to ascertain the truth. Based on Gavit's complaint the Naya Nagar police had earlier registered a FIR against the manager, booking clerk and scheduling clerk of the agency under section 408 ( criminal breach of trust) and relevant sections of the Essential Commodities (EC) Act, 1955 for black-marketing of the subsidized domestic gas. Further investigations were underway in both the cases.
While political leaders are known to switch parties, Sena MP Rajendra Gavit has the honour of having been a part of three major political parties-Congress, BJP and Shiv Sena in a short period. The latest switch was reportedly a part of the alliance arrangement between the saffron parties on the eve of assembly polls last year.