Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) leader and Maharashtra Social Justice Minister Dhananjay Munde on Tuesday, 12 January revealed that has been in a relationship with a 38-year-old woman since 2003, whose sister is now accusing him of rape.
Munde said that he also has two children with the the complainant’s sister and that his relationship is known to his family and friends.
Munde also alleged that the woman he has been in a relationship with, along with her siblings, have been blackmailing him for long and that matters had also been taken to the Bombay High Court in November 2020.
The Womans’s Accusations
The sister of the woman Munde claims to have a relationship with, filed a complaint of rape at Mumbai’s Oshiwara police station on 11 January. She also claimed that she knew Munde since 1997.
According to ANI, the woman said that Munde allegedly promised to marry her and get her work as a singer in Bollywood.
“Munde first raped her in 2008 when she was alone at home and shot a video of it. Since then he has repeated the act multiple times over the years. In 2019, he denied to marry her and said if she said anything, he would leak the video on social media. The police station denied to lodge an FIR in the case. We will go to court. If anything happens to her, then Munde will be responsible,” advocate Ramesh Tripathi, representing the woman was quoted by ANI.
Citing reports and allegations in the media and on social media, Munde took to Facebook to issue a statement saying that all claims made against him are false and are being levelled only to blackmail him.
“I have been in a consensual relationship since 2003. My wife, family and friends are aware of it. I also have a son and a daughter out of this consensual relationship. I have given my name to the two children. All official documents including the school admission certificates have my name too. The children live with me as well,” Munde said.
Munde said that his wife and children have accepted the woman and her children as a part of the family.
“I had approached the Supreme Court in November 2020 after had leaked private conversations and confidential documents to blackmail me and defame me on a public forum. The High Court had restrained her from publishing any material henceforth. The hearings in the court are underway, and efforts of settlement and reconciliation by the lawyers of both sides are also underway,” Munde stated.
He further requested the media to refrain from reporting on the matter so as to not affect the ongoing court case.
Munde said that the three have been trying to defame and blackmail him to extort money, despite him having taken care of all their needs financially, helping them secure businesses and a home in Mumbai.
“I have proof of SMS messages sent by the complainant to blackmail me to extort crores of rupees. The complaint has been filed as an additional pressure tactic in order to get the High Court case to be settled in their favour,” Munde further claimed.
BJP Attacks Thackeray Govt
According to ANI, the BJP women’s wing has written to CM Uddhav Thackeray to demand Munde’s removal from his cabinet. Maharashtra BJP leader Kirit Somaiya too took to Twitter to demand Munde’s removal from the cabinet.
“Munde has himself claimed that he has a wife, is in a relationship with another woman and now a third woman has levelled allegations against him. He does not have a right to stay in the cabinet until and unless he doesn’t get a clean chit in the whole matter,” BJP MP Kirit Somaiya said in a video message on Twitter.
Dhananjay Munde is the nephew of late Maharashtra BJP leader Gopinath Munde and is the cousin of BJP’s Pankaja Munde, who he defeated in the 2019 Maharashtra Assembly elections.