Rajasthan Water Resources Minister Mahipal Maderna was dropped from the Cabinet on Sunday night after a day-long confusion over an official recommendation sent to the Raj Bhavan for his dismissal in the wake of allegations about his involvement in a case of mysterious disappearance of an auxiliary nurse midwife, Bhanwari Devi.
Having failed to persuade Mr. Maderna – son of powerful Jat leader and Congress veteran Parasram Maderna – to put in his papers, Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot decided to recommend his sacking to the Governor.
The State government announced his removal late in the night, a day before a habeas corpus writ petition filed by Bhanwari Devi's husband comes up for the next hearing in the Rajasthan High Court.
Mr. Maderna's name figures as an accused in the first information report registered for rape, kidnap and murder of Bhanwari Devi, 36, who has been missing from Jaliwada village in Jodhpur district since September 1.
After his name was added to the FIR on a court order, Mr. Maderna faces charges under Sections 376 (rape), 302 (murder) and 120-B (criminal conspiracy) of the Indian Penal Code.