The NCP ruled out resignation of Maharashtra Home Minister Anil Deshmukh even as the demand for his removal grew louder over former Mumbai police chief’s allegation that he wanted police officers to collect Rs 100 crore monthly from bars and hotels in the city.
After a three-hour meeting at NCP president Sharad Pawar’s residence on Sunday, Jayant Patil, the party’s state chief and senior minister in the Maha Vikas Aghadi government, said there is no need to divert attention from the main incident of bomb scare outside Mukesh Ambani’s residence and the killing of Mansukh Hiran, a Thane-based businessman.
The focus is on these two events and after that appropriate steps will be taken, he said, adding the state Anti-Terrorism Squad has arrested two people in the connection with Hiran’s killing.
“The question of Maharashtra Home Minister Anil Deshmukh resigning does not arise,” Patil told reporters.
During a media briefing earlier in the day, Pawar said Maharashtra Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray will decide the fate of Deshmukh. The allegations levelled by former Mumbai police chief Param Bir Singh against Deshmukh are serious and require an in-depth probe, he said.
Pawar’s comments came amid speculation in state political circles that Maharashtra may soon have a new home minister. Pawar held the meeting with senior leaders Supriya Sule and Praful Patel, Deputy Chief Minister Ajit Pawar and Patil.