PANAJI: Leader of Opposition in the Goa assembly and Congress MLA Chandrakant Kavlekar and his wife Savitri, also a Congress leader, were booked in connection with a 2013 disproportionate assets case on Saturday, even as Anti-Corruption Bureau sleuths raided the residence and office premises owned by the couple.
According to Superintendent of Police (ACB) Bosco George, a first information report (FIR) has been filed against Kavlekar under sections 13(ii) read with 13 (1) (e) of the Prevention of Corruption Act, while his wife Savitri, who unsuccessfully contested the assembly polls on a Congress ticket from the Sanguem constituency in the 2017, has been also been booked for abetting the crime.
"The raids were conducted on Saturday morning, in connection with the disproportionate assets case where 14 properties worth crores of rupees were purchased in the state of Kerala. Kavlekar and his wife have amassed disproportionate asserts to the tune of Rs 4.78 crore, which is around 59.21 per cent above their known source of income," George said at a press conference in Panaji.
He said the properties were purchased in the period between January 2007 to April 2013, during which Kavlekar held the post of chairman of the Goa Industrial Development Corporation on three occasions.
The ACB raids on Saturday, were conducted at the couple's residence at Betul, in Quepem sub-district and their official premises in Margao town, located 35 km from Panaji.
Reacting to the raids, Kavlekar told reporters, that he had done nothing wrong. "I have been co-operating with the ACB and yet this is the fourth occasion when I have been raided. I know I have not done anything wrong," the leader of Opposition said.
Goa Congress President Shantaram Naik however, said the raids were "political in nature" and there was pressure on Congress MLAs to join the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) led coalition government.
"The raids are clearly political in nature. This government fears it might come into a minority soon and therefore have been trying to use police action to threaten Congress MLAs into joining the BJP government's fold," Naik told IANS.
Naik also said, that state machinery was being misused by the BJP-led coalition government for political purposes.
"The disproportionate case goes back so many years. Any investigation does not take so long. The timing and intent of the raids is condemnable," Naik added.