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Monday, December 6, 2021
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On Wankhede’s ‘clean chit’ by caste panel official, Nawab Malik’s objection

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Maharashtra minister Nawab Malik on Monday upped the ante against Sameer Wankhede and said he will approach President Ram Nath Kovind against the “clean chit” to the Narcotics Control Bureau (NCB) official by the vice chairperson of the National Commission for Scheduled Castes (NCSC).

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Arun Halder, the NCSC vice chairperson, went to Wankhede’s house on Sunday to what the official’s wife Kranti Redkar said was to check her husband’s original caste documents. Before that, Sameer Wankhede met Halder on Saturday and handed over a letter alleging harassment.

“Yesterday, the chairman of the National Scheduled Castes Commission Arun Halder visited Sameer Wankhede’s residence and him a clean chit. He should have conducted an investigation first and submitted a detailed report. We will complain about him to the President,” Nawab Malik said according to news agency ANI.

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Malik has been targeting Wankhede, who is heading a probe in the drugs-on-cruise case last month after which Bollywood star Shah Rukh Khan’s son Aryan Khan was arrested among others. The minister, who is also Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) leader, has repeatedly claimed that the NCB raid on the cruise ship on October 2 was “fake”.

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On Sunday, the minister also objected to Halder’s statement that Wankhedes never converted. “Halder may be a BJP leader, but he is appointed to a constitutional post. He should verify all facts of what information he has been given, prepare his report and submit it to Parliament, instead of coming before the media and commenting that Wankhede did not convert. A person who is not from a Scheduled Caste cannot claim benefits,” he was quoted as saying as news agency PTI.

“Sameer Wankhede never converted because he is a Muslim by birth. His father had converted and both children are born Muslims. I am not fighting a battle of caste and religion, but I am highlighting how a government job was obtained on a bogus caste certificate,” Malik said.

The NCP leader said that he stands by his claims that the Wankhede was a Muslim by birth and produced a fake certificate to get a government job.

Malik claimed that even though the Wankhedes were Muslims, they started “changing their identity from 2015” after Sameer Wankhede came to the limelight when he stopped some Bollywood celebrities at Mumbai airport. “On their social media accounts, Dawood Wankhede (the NCB official’s father) became DK Wankhede and later Dyandev. Yasmeen Wankhede (the NCB official’s sister) became Jasmine and she divorced her husband, who is a Muslim and is now settled in Europe,” the NCP leader claimed, according to PTI

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