Khadse claims ‘clean chit’ in land grab case

first_imgThe State Anti-Corruption Bureau (ACB) has submitted its report to a Pune court in an alleged land grab case involving former State Revenue Minister Eknath Khadse of a prime plot belonging to the Maharashtra Industrial Development Corporation (MIDC) in Bhosari.Sources said the agency, which submitted the report on Friday, had allegedly failed to find “definite proof” that Mr. Khadse had misused his office as Revenue Minister to seize a three-acre plot in the possession of the MIDC for his private use.Mr. Khadse, reacting to the development in Mumbai, said the agency had given him a clean chit. Speaking in Mumbai, he remarked that his two years in political wilderness were his “trial by fire.” “The accusations against me had no substance. But during my ‘trial’, I have come to know my friends from my enemies. I do not want to speak now of those who turned against me, despite my contribution towards building my party in Maharashtra,” said the BJP leader. He said he had voluntarily resigned from his post, and not due to pressure from any party. ‘Premature to comment’However, whistleblower Hemant Gawande, who first filed a complaint against Mr. Khadse in May 2016 in the case, said nothing definite can be said till the ACB reveals what the report says. “The ACB is the investigative agency directed by the High Court to investigate this case. It is not the final authority. It is too premature to comment on anything as I have not received any official notification about the report being submitted,” he told The Hindu. In May 2016, Mr. Gawande’s complaint, among other factors, had eventually contributed to Mr. Khadse’s resignation from the State Cabinet. In April last year, the ACB had lodged an FIR against Mr. Khadse in compliance with the Bombay High Court’s directive.The ACB had lodged an FIR under Sections 13 (1) d, 13 (2) and 15 of the Prevention of Corruption Act, 1988, and Section 109 of the Indian Penal Code against the former minister, his wife, Mandakini, son-in-law Girish Chaudhari, and Abbas Rasool Ukani, the original owner of the plot.last_img

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