MUMBAI: Maharashtra chief minister Uddhav thackeray chose not to act on a report pertaining to a racket on transfer of police officers brought to his notice only to save his government, opposition leader Devendra fadnavis of BJP alleged in a fresh attack on the Maha Vikas Aghadi government on Tuesday.
Fadnavis demanded a reaction from the CM, saying Thackeray must make a statement, and said he had with him a copy of the August 2020 report prepared by then commissioner of intelligence Rashmi Shukla, which includes a 6.3 GB file on call data intercepts. He said he would submit it to the union home secretary for investigation by the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI). By evening, Fadnavis had reached Delhi and handed over the report to Union home secretary Ajay Kumar Bhalla.
“The chief minister did not take any action though the GAD (general administration department) comes under him. The report has been with the government since August 2020, but till date no action has been taken on it. Seems like he shielded and protected this entire racket to save his government, ”Fadnavis alleged at a press conference at the state BJP headquarters in the morning.
Fadnavis said the report with the intercepted call data was submitted by Shukla to then director general of police Subodh Jaiswal on August 25 last year, who in turn submitted it to the ACS (home) on August 26. The phone tapping was done after permission from then additional chief secretary (home) Sitaram Kunte, he said.
The call data intercepts include names of senior IPS and non-IPS officers, junior officers and politicians, Fadnavis pointed out.
The report had subsequently reached the CM, he said, but no action was taken. “In his covering letter, the DG has recommended it to be brought to the notice of the Chief Minister and identify those named. He had also asked that the secrecy of the report be ensured to avoid bringing disrepute to the government, ”said Fadnavis.
Fadnavis accused the MVA government of “punishing” commissioner of intelligence Shukla, “who has worked on the post under three governments and has an impeccable record for exposing the transfer racket”.
“Rashmi Shukla, despite being the seniormost police officer, was overlooked for a promotion. She was promoted as director general of civil defense – a non-existent post not even sanctioned by the cabinet. On the other hand, those whose names surface in the call intercepts have got the posts they wanted, ”Fadnavis alleged.
He added that “Since the union home secretary is the custodian and the chief minister, despite being in charge of GAD, did nothing to act on the report, I will be submitting the report to the center”. He however refused to share the call data intercepts’ pen drive with the media, saying it contained sensitive information and he would submit it to the Union home secretary.
Speaking to the media later in the evening after meeting Bhalla, Fadnavis said, “I have handed over all the evidence with me in a sealed envelope.” Whom was the government (MVA) trying to protect? We need to address all these issues. We want this to be inquired into by the CBI. ” The opposition leader said he would not stop here. “If required we shall also approach the courts,” he said.