Allegations against Maha home minister: Cong seeks probe by committee

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Mumbai, Mar 24 (PTI) Maharashtra Congress chief Nana Patole on Wednesday demanded probe by a committee headed by a judge to get 'more clarity' on the issue of corruption allegations against state home minister Anil Deshmukh.

Congress is part of the MVA government in the state alongwith the Shiv Sena and the NCP.

Former Mumbai police commissioner Param Bir Singh has accused Deshmukh of asking police officials to collect Rs 100 crore a month from bars and hotels. Deshmukh, an NCP leader, has denied the charge.

'(NCP chief Sharad) Pawar himself has talked about the need for neutral probe into the Rs 100 crore allegation made by Singh. We demand the formation of a committee headed by a sitting or retired judge for more clarity on this,' Patole told reporters here.

'It will clear everything. This is the Congress's demand,' he added.

He also alleged that Singh, when he was Mumbai police commissioner, 'was making excuses' (to avoid registering an offence) in the MP Mohan Delkar death case'.

Delkar allegedly committed suicide in a Mumbai hotel last month.

'Singh's role was suspicious....I definitely would have suspended him, not transferred,' Patole alleged.

Singh was transferred to the Home Guard following police officer Sachin Waze's arrest by the NIA in the case of the bomb scare near industrialist Mukesh Ambani's house.

Patole also said the Congress will ask Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray to disclose the number of 'RSS people' appointed by the previous Devendra Fadnavis government and what facilities and perks such appointees received.

About BJP leaders meeting Governor Bhagat Singh Koshyari on Wednesday, Patole claimed the Governor's role was 'suspicious' and the Raj Bhavan had become a 'BJP office'.

The people will not forgive the BJP 'for the contract they have taken to defame Maharashtra,' he said.

The BJP was trying to destabilise the government but failed, the Congress leader said, also claiming that the opposition party raised other issues to divert attention from the COVID-19 situation and the 'poor availability' of vaccines. PTI ENM KRK KRK