The Congress party on Saturday dubbed the resignation of Maharashtra Revenue Minister Eknath Khadse as a 'mere drama' and said a criminal case should be registered against him for misuse of public office.
Khadse resigned from his post following allegations of impropriety with regard to a land deal and alleged calls from underworld don Dawood Ibrahim.
"Resignation drama alone will not do. There are clear cut charges that he was talking to the dreaded terrorist Dawood Ibrahim. The charge is that he has taken government land for a pittance of three crores, 21 lakhs when it is valued at nearly 30-40 crore of rupees. The charge is that he as a minister himself presided over a meeting and ordered double compensation for that land, direct beneficiaries of which were his own family members," Congress spokesperson Randeep Surjewala told ANI.
"Would these charges get washed away by mere resignation? The answer is clearly no. A criminal case should be registered against him for misuse of public office. A fair and independent judicial probe must be held into the terrorist links if any of Khadse," he added.
Khadse today met Maharashtra Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis amid reports that the BJP has begun the process to act against him.
The senior-most minister in the Fadnavis Cabinet is facing serious allegations over an illicit land deal and his cellphone number allegedly appearing in the call records of most-wanted gangster Dawood Ibrahim.
Khadse has maintained the land was not owned by the government, that he bought it from a private party, and that he paid the stamp duty or tax on the market value of the plot which he says proves that the deal was above-board.
The Maharashtra's Anti-Terror squad is investigating the alleged calls to the minister from Dawood Ibrahim. Khadse has denied any links to Dawood Ibrahim.