MUMBAI: Maharashtra Home Minister Dilip Walse Patil on Monday announced a Criminal Investigation Department (CID) probe into the allegations raised by opposition leader Devendra Fadnavis that conspiracies to implicate BJP leaders including himself were hatched by Maha Vikas Aghadi (MVA) leaders at the office of special public prosecutor Pravin Chavan.
He said this "sting operation" will also be probed.
Replying to a debate on law and order in the Lower House, Walse Patil said Pravin Chavan has resigned as the special public prosecutor. "Advocate Pravin Chavan, whose name was raised in the sting operation, have resigned as government advocate. We will verify the details given in the pen drive and CID will carry out the probe. After its report, we will initiate the actions," Walse Patil said.
"This sting operation on Pravin Chavan will be probed. There is no question of supporting anyone involved," the state home minister said.
On March 8, Fadnavis brought a pen drive containing "proof" to Deputy Speaker Narhari Zirwal. He had claimed this pen drive comprised video recordings running into 125 hours, showing how conspiracies were hatched by the police and members of the MVA (Shiv Sena, NCP and Congress) to frame BJP leaders, including himself, in false cases at the office of Pravin Chavan.
Fadnavis had said that the video footage showed Chavan talking about how meetings (were held) at the highest level from the chief minister to state DGP to the police commissioner to frame BJP leader Girish Mahajan under MCOCA and arrest him.
The BJP leader had demanded a CBI probe.
Fadnavis on Monday said the state government cannot probe the allegations raised by him and insisted on a probe by the Central Bureau of Investigation. "The BJP will move the court if our demand is not met, he added.
BJP MLAs staged a walkout demanding a CBI probe.
Meanwhile, Walse Patil claimed that the illegal phone tapping between 2015-2019 involved four elected representatives of the BJP.
"The phone tapping was done illegally under the garb that phones of drug peddlers have been put under surveillance," he said.
Speaking in the Assembly, Shiv Sena MLA Bhaskar Jadhav wondered how the contents of the pen drive submitted by Fadnavis to the House found the way in the public domain.
"The pen drive is the property of the House. How come its contents are available in the public domain. Is it not the breach of the privilege of the House?" he asked.
Senior NCP leader Jayant Patil said the point raised by Jadhav is valid.