Ranjit Savarkar, the grandnephew of Hindutva ideologue Veer Savarkar, said the Congress will not take action against Shiv Sena MP Sanjay Raut for his controversial statement on Indira Gandhi as he "holds the key" to their power in Maharashtra. Savarkar took a jibe at Shiv Sena coalition partner Congress saying they won't do anything that keeps them away from the government. He also backed Raut's claim.
"Sanjay Raut is a good fried of Congress and now he is exposing them. He says he has seen the whole Mantralay coming to receive Karim Lala and Haji Mastani. He says that Indira Gandhi used to visit him at Pydhonie (in south Mumbai). What are they (Congress) going to do about it? Sanjay Raut holds the key to power and if Congress acts against him they'll lose power. They will not do anything to harm their chances of being in the government," Ranjit Savarkar said.
He went on to challenge the Congress to either take action against Sanjay Raut or accept his charges. "I know what Sanjay Raut has told is the truth as he has written about it several times. I don't think he will go back in his statement." Although Raut did retract from his statement on Thursday.
After facing backlash from Maharashtra coalition partner Congress, Sanjay Raut retracted his statement where he claimed that former PM Indira Gandhi had links with underworld dons of Mumbai. The outspoken Sena leader came under fire from Congress leaders like Sanjay Nirupam, Milind Deora and Abhishek Singhvi over his controversial remark made on Wednesday. The Sena, NCP and Congress have allied as the Maha Vikas Aghadi coalition to govern Maharashtra.
"Our friends in Congress need not be offended by this. I have defended Indira Gandhi many times when she was attacked while Congress kept mute. If someone thinks that my statement would dent the stature of Indira Ji or hurt the sentiment of someone, then I retract my statement," Raut told reporters in Mumbai.
Talking about the past influence of the underworld over Mumbai, Sanjay Raut claimed that the underworld decided who will be the city's commissioner and in the state secretariat. Moreover, he claimed that the entire secretariat would meet don Haji Mastan when he was in town.
"They (underworld) used to decide who will be Mumbai's police commissioner and who will sit in Mantralaya (state secretariat)," Raut said. He added, "When (underworld don) Haji Mastan came to Mantralaya, the entire secretariat would come down to see him. Indira Gandhi used to meet Karim Lala in Pydhonie (in south Mumbai)".