Mumbai police's EOW files closure report in case against Shiv Sena MP Ravindra Waikar

Opposition targets govt
Last Updated : 06 July 2024, 04:39 IST

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Mumbai: Months after former Maharashtra minister Ravindra Waikar switched over to Eknath Shinde-led Shiv Sena from the Uddhav Thackeray-led party, the Mumbai police's Economic Offences Wing has filed a closure report in a case against him for alleged irregularities in the construction of a luxury hotel here, an official said on Saturday.

Waikar is currently the MP from Mumbai North West Lok Sabha constituency. He defeated the Shiv Sena (UBT) candidate Amol Kirtikar by a thin margin of 48 votes as per the results declared last month.

Once a close aide of Uddhav Thackeray, Waikar joined the Shinde-led Shiv Sena in March this year. He was a former standing committee chairman of the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC), a four time corporator and MLA from Jogeshwari for four terms.

He was Minister of State for Housing, Higher and Technical Education between 2014 and 2019. As per the FIR registered against Waikar, he had entered into a contract with the BMC after getting permission to run a sports facility at a plot in Jogeshwari. The permission was granted when the Maha Vikas Aghadi (MVA) government was in power.

In early 2023, a notice was issued to him for using the plot of land reserved for a public garden to construct a hotel. A Crime Branch official said, "The EOW filed a closure report in a court on Thursday in the case registered against Waikar, his wife Manisha and his four close associates. The reason mentioned for closure of the case is incomplete information and misunderstanding."

As per the C-summary report, the complaint filed on behalf of the BMC was based on "incomplete information and misunderstanding". The C-summary report is filed in cases where the FIR is found to be based on a mistake of fact. Waikar, his wife Manisha, business partners Aasoo Nehlanai, Raj Lalchandani and Prithpal Bindra, and architect Arun Dubey had been booked on the charges of criminal breach of trust, cheating and criminal conspiracy on the complaint filed by BMC sub-engineer Santosh Mandavkar.

The case was initially registered at the Azad Maidan police station and the investigation was later transferred to the EOW. In the wake of the EOW filing the closure report, the opposition targeted the Shinde-led government. Congress leader Sachin Sawant alleged that the closure of the case against Waikar is another example of political blackmail going on in the state for the last 10 years.

"The chronology of the BJP washing machine is that party leader Kirit Somaiya will level allegations, file a complaint. The probe agencies will then scare the concerned person and his family with raids and investigation. The person will have to join the BJP or its ally and then he will get a clean chit," he claimed. Sawant also accused the ruling BJP of taking the state's politics to a low level.

"In the Lok Sabha polls, people have cleansed the politics to some extent, but the work is still incomplete. The cleanliness drive of the Maharashtra politics will be complete in the assembly polls," Sawant said. Shiv Sena (UBT) leader Sanjay Raut said, "Waikar ran away and left us after getting scared of the probe agencies. Now he has got a clean chit. What else can you expect? BJP should accept that it filed false cases to scare the opponents."

"NCP leader Praful Patel's properties that were attached were released. Even I was arrested over a false case. Why there is a case against me...Just because I am not switching sides," he claimed.

Published 06 July 2024, 04:39 IST

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