Congress leader Sanjay Nirupam on Sunday demanded Maharashtra Home Minister Anil Deshmukh's resignation over the grave allegations leveled against him by former Mumbai Police Commissioner Param Bir Singh in his letter to Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray.
"If the letter is taken as truth then the Home Minister is running an extortion racket from his home. It is not a small matter. Deshmukh should be sacked and actions should be taken on Param Bir Singh. He should be suspended and interrogated," the Congress leader said.
Raising questions on its ally in the Maha Vikas Aghadi government, Nirupam asked, "Did (NCP Supremo) Sharad Pawar form the government to see this day? To extort money from common people? An extensive and in-depth investigation should be carried out into this," he demanded.
The Congress leader also suggested that the Enforcement Directorate can also take up the investigation into Param Bir Singh's allegations, as the matter involves a large sum of money. He went on to allege Shiv Sena's involvement in the case.
Earlier on Saturday, Congress leader Rashid Alvi had also demanded Deshmukh's resignation, claiming that the party's reputation was at stake, due to the questions being raised over its allies in the ruling coalition.
Several BJP leaders like Devendra Fadnavis, Chitra Wagh, Girish Mahajan have condemned the alleged illicit activities of the NCP minister and accused the ruling coalition of corruption. Protests have broken out in several places across Maharashtra demanding Deshmukh's resignation.
Amid growing heat over the MVA government, Sharad Pawar has summoned NCP Ministers including Deputy CM Ajit Pawar and Jayant Patil for a key meeting over the grievous allegations raised by the former Mumbai CP. Shiv Sena's Sanjay Raut is also likely to attend the meeting, sources said.
In an explosive letter to Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray, Param Bir Singh accused Maharashtra Home Minister of corruption, alleging that Deshmukh had asked controversial Mumbai cop Sachin Vaze to collect Rs 100 crore each month from various locations across the city. However, Deshmukh denied the allegations stating that Param Bir has raised false allegations to "save himself" from the Mansukh Hiren and Antilia Bomb scare case.
The National Investigation Agency (NIA) is investigating the Antilia bomb scare case, in which Mumbai Police officer Sachin Vaze has been arrested, and has also taken over the Mansukh Hiren alleged murder case. Maharashtra ATS has arrested two persons, a cop and a bookie in the case related to Hiren's death. This happened before the NIA took over the case.