‘Undergo narco tests’: the ‘Agni Pariksha’ challenge from BJP chief to Anil Deshmukh

As Maharashtra’s Home Secretary Anil Deshmukh grapples with the heat of corruption allegations, a BJP leader challenged him and Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray to undergo “ testing narco ” to prove that the state government is telling the truth.

“Even Sita mata has gone through ‘agni pariksha’, so why can’t they? ANI news agency quoted BJP chief Ram Kadam.

A political storm is brewing in Maharashtra, following allegations by former Mumbai police commissioner Param Bir Singh that Deshmukh asked arrested cop Sachin Vaze to collect 100 crore per month from various establishments in town by extortion. The former senior police officer took the Supreme Court today, seeking instructions for an immediate “impartial, uninfluential, impartial and fair” investigation by the CBI into Deshmukh’s alleged fraudulent practices.

In his petition to the court, Singh claimed that Deshmukh held meetings at his residence with police officers, including Vaze of Crime Intelligence Unit, Mumbai, and Sanjay Patil, ACP Social Service Branch, Mumbai, avoiding their elders.

The issue was the focal point today at Lok Sabha, where the BJP demanded the resignation of the Maha Vikas Aghadi (MVA) government led by Uddhav Thackeray. Raising the issue during Zero Hour in Lok Sabha amid the Shiv Sena and NCP protests, BJP member Manoj Kotak pointed out that, according to Singh’s letter to the chief minister, the state interior minister had asked the now suspended Vaze to collect 100 crore of bars and restaurants in the metropolis every month. Rakesh Singh, another BJP leader, said the issue is so serious that it cannot be called a state subject because it has national implications.

The Shiv Sena, the Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) and Congress are part of the MVA government in Maharashtra. Coalition partners have played their part in Deshmukh’s defense, with the Sena claiming that the BJP has hatched a plot to defame the Shiv Sena-Congress-NCP exemption over the past 14 months so that he can form a government in the state. Congress also claimed that central agencies were being used against opposition-led states for one or the other pretext.

(With contributions from agencies)