Income Tax search on at NCP’s Hasan Mushrif’s Kolhapur properties
The Income Tax (IT) department conducted a search at the residential and factory premises of Hasan Mushrif, Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) leader from Kolhapur, on Thursday.
The search came days after he refused to join ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) after an invitation from BJP’s state chief Chandrakant Patil.
Mushrif is a member of the legislative assembly (MLA) from Kagal, Kolhapur, and has been a minister in the Maharashtra government.
Searches were conducted at the premises after some discrepancies were reported in the sugar mill’s account books.“The searches are still in progress,” said an IT official on condition of anonymity, without elaborating.
The IT department also searched property belonging to Mushrif in Kondhwa, Pune. However, reports of searches in other property belonging to Mushrif could not be confirmed independently. Having started in the early hours of Thursday in Kolhapur, the search continued through the day at Mushrif’s residence as well as at the sugar mill controlled by him.
Maharashtra NCP chief Jayant Patil alleged that the government was trying to deter a “genuine” leader like Mushrif through the raid conducted by the central agency. Other NCP leaders criticised the searches by the IT department.
“What is happening in this state? Instead of focusing on corrupt people, the house of a person who is working at the grassroot level, and trying to solve various welfare-related questions, is being raided. This is an attempt to tarnish his image because he stuck by Sharad Pawar’s side,” said NY Patil, head of NCP’s Kolhapur district unit, speaking to local news channels.
“Two days ago, he was invited to join BJP. This is probably a tactic to get back at him for doing this. The Kagal population, which has seen Mushrif’s work and know him, will not stay quiet,” said Pratap Mane, another member of NCP from Kagal.
A crowd of supporters that gathered around Mushrif’s house chanted slogans against the BJP government as well as Chandrakant Patil, before Mushrif appeared and requested the crowd to disperse.