Land deal with Naiks in Raigad by Thackeray family be probed by CBI

CM Uddhav Thackeray

It’s a serious charge that the senior BJP leader and former Lok Sabha member Kirit Somaiya levelled against the Thackeray family for purchasing land in Raigad from interior designer Anvay Naik, who allegedly died by suicide in 2018 and left a suicide note naming Republic TV editor Arnab Goswami and two others.

It’s also serious because Uddhav Thackeray government re-opened the case which was closed two years ago and the way Arnab Goswami was arrested from his Mumbai home early in the morning. Somaiya demanded a probe to find out if there were business relations among Rashmi Thackeray and Thackeray family and Naiks and whether the deal had any connection with Goswami’s arrest.

The Republic TV editor-in-chief Goswami was arrested last week by the Alibag police and charged with abetment to suicide of Naik and his mother. Naik in his suicide note had alleged non-payment of dues by Goswami and two others against work he had done for them. Goswami was released from Taloja Central Prison on Wednesday after the Supreme Court granted him interim bail.

The BJP leader alleged Rashmi Thackeray and Manisha Waikar, wife of former minister of state, Ravindra Waikar (a Sena leader), purchased the land in Raigad district a few years ago. Somaiya claimed to have furnished the documents related to the purchase of nine such pieces of land in Raigad to the district collector and demanded further inquiry. “It is necessary for people to know if the Thackeray family had any business or commercial relations with Anvay Naik and his family,” pointed out the former Lok Sabha member.

The BJP leader Somaiya claimed the land parcels in Karjat and Murud were purchased jointly by Thackeray and Waikar. While making allegations, he furnished documents, including the 7/12 extract and the mutation entries related to the ownership of land, as proof for his claims. The land originally belonged to Anvay, his wife Akshata and daughter Adnya, according to the entries, said Somaiya, adding that he has submitted letters to the Raigad collector and superintendent of police of the district demanding an inquiry

On the other hand, the Sena leaders are now working hard to defend Thackerays in this regard and dismissed it by saying that Somaiya is making a mountain out of molehill, but he will gain nothing out of it. Most important thing is that similar questions were raised by the Congress leader and former Lok Sabha member Sanjay Nirupam over the deal, four years ago.

The Uddhav Thackeray government was exposed badly after the entire episode came into public domain and it’s now clear that the deal had connection with Goswami’s recent arrest. Goswami is very vocal against the Thackeray government for its “misdeeds.”

In such circumstances no one can expect a fair enquiry from the ruling Sena government in this regard and hence the entire case be probed by the CBI so that truth should come out!

** M Charulata