Other States

Kirit Somaiya’s corruption allegations ‘selective’: Raju Shetti

Swabhimani Shetkari Sanghatana's chief Raju Shetti. File. Photo: Special Arrangement  

Farmer leader and Swabhimani Shetkari Sanghatana chief Raju Shetti has accused Bharatiya Janata Party leader Kirit Somaiya of targeting leaders of the Uddhav Thackeray-led Maha Vikas Aghadi government with ‘political malice’ rather than being genuinely interested in uncovering corruption.

Debunking Mr. Somaiya’s posturing as an impartial anti-corruption crusader, Mr. Shetti dared the BJP leader to unravel irregularities in the Mumbai District Central Cooperative Bank (MDCCB) headed by Mr. Somaiya’s party colleague Pravin Darekar, BJP’s Leader of the Opposition in the Maharashtra Legislative Council.

The MVA government on Thursday had initiated an inquiry against the MDCCB for alleged irregularities over the last five years. The move is viewed as a retaliatory gesture against the BJP after Mr. Somaiya recently accused Maharashtra Minister and senior NCP leader Hasan Mushrif and his kin of being embroiled in a ₹127-crore money laundering scandal as well of irregularities to the tune of ₹100 crore in a cooperative sugar factory owned by the latter.

“It appears Mr. Somaiya corruption ‘exposes’ are selective. They are designed to target leaders of particular parties only. If he has the guts, why not blow the whistle on the MDCCB case,” said Mr. Shetti, a former two-time MP from Kolhapur district.

At the same time, he ticked off the MVA administration as well, rebuking Mr. Thackeray’s government for failing to provide compensation to the victims of the recent floods which ravaged Konkan and western Maharashtra.

Mr. Shetti had severed ties with the BJP-led National Democratic Alliance in August 2017, turning into a vociferous critic of the Narendra Modi and the Devendra Fadnavis governments at the Centre and the State.

Before the 2019 Parliamentary election, Mr. Shetti had backed Sharad Pawar’s NCP and the Congress. But the new alliance proved costly with Mr. Shetti’s seemingly sure grip on Hatkanangale undercut by the Shiv Sena’s Dhairyasheel Mane, who defeated him to snare the vital constituency in Kolhapur.

Since then, he has focused on farmer issues, reserving his censure for both the ruling MVA and the opposition BJP.

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Printable version | Oct 24, 2021 8:08:02 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/other-states/kirit-somaiyas-corruption-allegations-selective-raju-shetti/article36660961.ece

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