The Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) seems to have tied itself up in knots over the transfer of assistant commissioner of police Vasant Dhoble with leaders contradicting each other on the issue.
The transfer has turned into a political controversy, with sections of citizens and the Opposition calling it unfair.
On Saturday, although NCP legislator and trade union leader, Sharad Rao, threatened that unions led by him would go on strike on February 19, he refused to comment on Dhoble’s transfer stating the larger issue was unfair action against hawkers.
However, earlier this week deputy chief minister Ajit Pawar had come out in support of Dhoble, pointing out that “sincere officials” who were doing their job should not be penalised. However, he had clarified that he believed the transfer to be a political decision.
“I don’t think Dhoble was transferred because of representation by hawkers. In fact, some legislators made this representation,” Pawar had said.
On Friday, guardian minister of the state, Jayant Patil, had also supported Dhoble. “You cannot penalise someone for following the law. If you want hawkers everywhere, you change the laws to give more permits,’ said Patil.
However earlier in the week, party spokesperson Nawab Malik had said had come out in support of Chavan for his decision to transfer Dhoble. Malik said, “The BMC has failed to implement the hawker’s policy. They have not issued new permits since the late 70s. Rao, as a trade union leader, has the right and freedom to call for a strike.”