Leader of Opposition in the Maharashtra Assembly Devendra Fadnavis on Wednesday shared a quote by famous Irish playwright George Bernand Shaw moments after Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) leader Nawab Malik accused the former of patronising a fake currency racket and shielding people with underworld links during his tenure as chief minister. Fadnavis posted an image with a text that read “I learned long ago, never to wrestle with a pig, you get dirty. And Besides, The pig likes it”.
Earlier in the day, Malik accused Fadnavis of saving one Imran Aslam Shaikh after he was caught in a fake currency case and having links with Riyaz Bhati, an alleged aide of underworld don Dawood Ibrahim. Malik also alleged that Fadnavis, who served as the chief minister of the state from 2014 to 2019, appointed a Nagpur criminal Munna Yadav and a “Bangladeshi extortionist” Haider Azam to statutory corporations of the state government to shield them.
Addressing the conference, the NCP leader also spoke about “more bombs” that were to be dropped in the coming days and spilling more beans on the BJP leadership.
He further said that while his fight was against someone who was framing innocent people in fake cases, Fadnavis was trying to defend him. This was in reference to the Narcotics Control Bureau’s (NCB) Mumbai zonal director Sameer Wankhede against whom Malik has levelled several allegations ever since the drugs bust case drew national attention.
His accusations came a day after Fadnavis said Malik had business dealings with convicts of the 1993 Mumbai blasts case.
Meanwhile, BJP leader Ashish Shelar rubbished Malik’s claims and said Fadnavis never shielded wrongdoers. “Munna Yadav had cases against him but there is Nationalist Congress Party link to them too. Fadnavis never shielded any fake currency case and Malik too has not given any proof while levelling allegations,” said Shelar, a former state minister.
Shelar also produced photographs of Bhati with many ruling party leaders, including chief minister Uddhav Thackeray, and said he was being protected by the NCP.
“Bhati was one of the recovery agents engaged by former police officer Sachin Vaze for the collection of the extortion money. The NCP has been shielding Bhati who is absconding to ensure that their links with him are not exposed,” the BJP leader added.