HomePoliticsShiv Sena leader and Maharashtra Minister Anil Parab in a soup as...

Shiv Sena leader and Maharashtra Minister Anil Parab in a soup as ED raids multiple locations linked to him

Raids come days ahead of crucial poll season; Sanjay Raut says Sena fully behind Parab, will not bow to political vendetta


Mumbai: In a major jolt to the Shiv Sena, the Enforcement Directorate (ED) on Thursday conducted raids at multiple locations across Maharashtra linked to Shiv Sena leader and State Transport Minister Anil Parab. The raids followed after the agency filed a case under the Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA).  

The ED searched seven premises in Mumbai, Pune and the Konkan region (particularly in Dapoli where Anil Parab owns a resort) either directly belonging to Parab, or belonging to persons said to be closely connected to him. 

The ED raids started around 6 a.m. Among the places raided since morning were Parab’s official residence ‘Ajinkyatara’ in south Mumbai, his private residence, the residence of a person in Kothrud who has had dealings with Parab. Besides this, raids were also conducted at places in Ratnagiri and Parab’s controversially constructed resort in Dapoli, which has been in the eye of a political storm for several months now.  

Anil Parab is the third minister in the Uddhav Thackeray-led ‘Maha Vikas Aghadi’ (MVA) coalition to feel the heat of the central probe agencies after the ED arrested NCP leaders Anil Deshmukh and Nawab Malik. 

The raids on Parab, a close confidante of Chief Minister and Sena president Uddhav Thackeray, come a day after the ED on Wednesday had issued summons to Sena leader Yashwant Jadhav, who is the former chairman of the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation’s (BMC) standing committee for alleged violations of the Foreign Exchange Management Act (FEMA).   

The timing of the raids is significant given that the polls to the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) – considered to be India’s richest civic body – are due in some months. Besides this, the biennial elections to six Rajya Sabha seats and 10 seats from the Elected by MLAs constituencies in the Maharashtra Legislative Council (MLC).

Anil Parab has been considered to be a master strategist in the Shiv Sena when it comes to the Rajya Sabha and MLC polls. The raids come at a time when these two polls are due next month.

The opposition Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) is using every trick in the book to break the Shiv Sena’s stranglehold over the BMC, which is considered to be the Sena’s financial nerve-centre and lifeline. The BJP recently launched a ‘Pol Khol’ campaign to expose the alleged corruption brewing within the BMC.   

Both Parab and Jadhav are key strategists in the upcoming BMC poll besides having the CM’s ear on major issues pertaining to policy in the State government and the BMC respectively.  

Senior Shiv Sena MP Sanjay Raut argued that the Sena was firmly behind Parab, and accused the BJP-ruled Centre of acting with “political malice” in carrying out such raids. 

Raut further remarked, “Such raids by central agencies have been going on for some time now. They are out of sheer political malice. Compared to the kind of allegations which are being made against Anil Parab and my other colleagues, more serious cases are pending against BJP leaders. But the agencies do not touch them… Whatever be your (BJP’s) vendetta politics, we (Shiv Sena and the MVA) will not bow before it. All elections will go smoothly and so will the functioning of the MVA.”

He added that such raids, instead of demoralizing the Sena, merely served to increase the party’s confidence. In April this year, Raut himself had been under the ED’s scanner with the agency attaching his assets in Mumbai and Alibaug.    

When asked for his comments over ED raids on Parab, Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) leader and Deputy Chief Minister Ajit Pawar was guarded in his reaction.  

Speaking to newspersons here in Mumbai, the senior NCP leader said: “The Income Tax also raided the homes of my relatives. While Central and State agencies have the authority to probe anything they want, the expectation is that they should not misuse their powers. All such raids ought to be carried out in a transparent manner and without any political angle.”  

Meanwhile, reacting to the developments senior Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leader Dr Kirit Somaiya, who has been targeting Anil Parab over allegedly ‘illicit’ constructions in the Konkan, remarked that Parab ought to be prepared to go behind bars. 

The BJP leader further remarked, “After Anil Deshmukh and Nawab Malik, the third state cabinet minister Anil Parab needs to pack his bags to go to jail… firstly, Anil Parab’s name had come up after (dismissed) assistant police inspector Sachin Vaze had claimed that Parab received crores of rupees as kickbacks for effecting police transfers. Then in 2020, the Maharashtra government itself had lodged a case of fraud and cheating on his illegal resort in Dapoli. I think the ED will cover all these allegations in their probe against him.”


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