ED is being used to settle scores with BJP critics, says Maharashtra home minister

The home minister has, however, clarified that there was no restriction on venturing out to celebrate the New Year if the state guidelines are followed properly
Maharashtra home minister Anil Deshmukh.(HT file photo)
Maharashtra home minister Anil Deshmukh.(HT file photo)
Updated on Dec 31, 2020 01:14 AM IST
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BySurendra Gangan, Mumbai

Maharashtra home minister Anil Deshmukh has lashed out at Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) saying the ruling party at is implementing vendetta politics by misusing the central agency Enforcement Directorate (ED). He said that since the state government withdrew the permission for the probe by Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) in state-related cases without state government permission, the BJP is now utilising ED to harass leaders from opposition parties.

“This has been happening in the country for the first time. The ED is being utilised to settle the political score against the leaders and the parties who speak against the BJP and their leaders. The ED notices are sent to the leaders who speak against the BJP. The CBI would do this in the past. But ever since Maharashtra government tweaked its notification and made state government’s permission mandatory for any probe by CBI in state-related case, the ED has been doing the favour to the central ruling party,” he said.

Read more: PMC Bank scam: After ED summons Varsha Raut, Shiv Sena shows support

Deshmukh was speaking in the backdrop of the recent summons to Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) leader Eknath Khadse who recently crossed over from BJP, and Varsha, wife of Shiv Sena leader Sanjay Raut.

The home minister has, however, clarified that there was no restriction on venturing out to celebrate the New Year if the state guidelines are followed properly. “There is no restriction on going out to meet friends, but an assembly of more than five people is prohibited. Hotels, bars, restaurants, pubs are allowed to operate till 11pm on December 31. We appeal to people who are celebrating the New Year at hill stations to follow the guidelines issued by the government and stick to the Covid-19-appropriate behaviour,” he said.

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