A delegation of Shiv Sena ministers called on Maharashtra Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis and demanded sacking of BJP MLA Shivaji Kardile, booked with others by the Ahmednagar Police on charge of hatching a criminal conspiracy to kill two Sena leaders last week, apparently over political rivalry.
The delegation comprised Environment Minister Ramdas Kadam, Industries Minister Subhash Desai, Transport Minister Diwakar Raote, Public Undertakings Minister Eknath Shinde, and Health Minister Deepak Sawant.
“We asked the chief minister to sack Kardile from the BJP for his alleged involvement in the double murder of Sena activists in Ahmednagar,” Kadam said after meeting the chief minister at his office in Mantralaya.
Two motorcycle-borne assailants shot dead Sanjay Kotkar (35) and Vasant Thube (40) in Shahunagar area of Kedgaon in Ahmednagar on April 7, hours after the result of a civic bypoll in the area was announced. The bypoll was won by a Congress candidate.
Kardile, who represents Rahuri constituency, was arrested yesterday for allegedly vandalising the office of the Ahmednagar superintendent of police on Saturday along with supporters after his son-in-law and NCP MLA Sangram Jagtap was detained in the double murder case.
Besides vandalism, Kardile was also booked on charge of a criminal conspiracy in the murder case.
Police on Sunday arrested Sangram Jagtap (33) and three others, including a suspected shooter, in connection with the murder case, which is being probed by a Special Investigation Team (SIT).
Sangram Jagtaps father and NCP MLC, Arun Jagtap, who was also booked on charge of a conspiracy in connection with the killings, is on the run.
Meanwhile, NCP leader Ajit Pawar termed arrest of party MLA Jagtap as a “political conspiracy”.
Addressing a press conference in Satara in western Maharashtra, the former deputy chief minister said the NCP leader was arrested with an intention to “defame” the Sharad Pawar-led party.
Referring to the statement of Sandip Gunjal, a suspected shooter arrested in the case, Pawar said the accused had said that the murder was the fallout of a personal enmity and denied any political link.
“….However, the focus is only on the NCP and Sangram Jagtap. I know Sangram since his childhood. He has done commendable work as a Mayor and now as an MLA. His innocence will be proved soon. I see a political conspiracy behind his arrest. Police should arrest the mastermind behind the murder,” said Pawar.
The NCP stalwart condemned vandalism of the Ahmednagar SPs office.