Republican Party of India (RPI) chief Ramdas Athawale on Saturday hailed Maharashtra government's decision to allow the transfer of the Bhima-Koregaon case to the National Investigation Agency (NIA).
Speaking to news agency ANI, Ram ddas Athawale said, "The Centre's agency has all the rights to investigate the Bhima Koregaon-Elgar Parishad case, as it involves the Maoist movement in the country. Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray has taken the right decision by allowing the transfer of the contentious case to the Centre."
Speaking of MVA leader and NCP chief Sharad Pawar opposing CM Thackeray's decision, Athawale said. "It is true, that the difference in opinion has brought a certain rift among the party members, but there have been several internal disagreements in the MVA government over various decisions."
"As for me, Shiv Sena chief Uddhav Thackeray made the right decision by transferring the Bhima Koregaon case to NIA," Ramdas Athawale reiterated.
Opposing Maharashtra government's decision to allow the transfer of the Elgar Parishad case to the NIA, NCP chief Sharad Pawar, on February 14, said that the CM had the right to do so. Disapproving the move, he said that the Maharashtra government should not have accepted the Centre's demand. Pawar had first promised a probe into the case as he opposed the BJP government's alleged problem with dissent.
"The CM has the right to take a decision allowing the case to be transferred to NIA. But I feel that the Centre must not have given the case to the NIA as it was being investigated by Maharashtra state police. At the same time, it is not right for Maharashtra government to accept the Centre's demand like this," he said to ANI.
NIA took over the probe on January 24 under which nine activists - Sudhir Dhawale, Rona Wilson, Surendra Gadling, Mahesh Raut, Shoma Sen, Arun Ferriera, Vernon Gonsalves, Sudha Bharadwaj and Varavara Rao have been charged with 'conspiracy to assassinate PM Narendra Modi', 'overthrow the government', 'waging war against the Government of India'.
(with inputs from ANI)