The state election commission has directed Pune's district returning officer to file a formal complaint with the appropriate authority against former minister of state for home Ramesh Bagwe for submitting a false affidavit while filing his nomination papers during the 2009 assembly elections.
Pune district returning officer Aparna Wankhede received the order to this effect from the deputy chief electoral officer AN Walvi on Tuesday.
"We will see the letter and then decide the future course of the action," she told the Hindustan Times. HT has first reported on July 15 last year how the election commission was planning to initiate action against Bagwe, the then minister of state for home in the Ashok Chavan cabinet. Bagwe, in his affidavit, had failed to disclose details of three cases, which were pending against him.
The state election commission had sought the Election Commission of India's opinion on the complaint filed by Shiv Sena candidate Sadadnad Shetty, who had contested against Bagwe from Pune Cantonment constituency. Shetty had filed complaint with Election Commission on May 18, 2010.
To this, the Election Commission of India in its letter said, "In order to deal with cases of filing false information, the commission has directed that where any complaint regarding furnishing of false information by any candidate is submitted by anyone, supported by some documentary evidence, the returning officers concerned should initiate action to prosecute the candidates concerned by filing formal complaints before the appropriate authority".
Bagwe's criminal background became a topic of discussion when Pune police withheld renewal of his passport in May last year. Bagwe had made serious allegations against Pune police and particularly Pune police commissioner Satyapal Sinh over this issue. Owning to these controversies, Bagwe, a close associate of Suresh Kalmadi, failed to secure a ministerial berth for himself in the Prithviraj Chavan ministry.
Bagwe was not available for comments despite several attempts.