With The BJP likely to go all out to repair the damage that allegations against Maharashtra strongman Eknath Khadse have caused to the party’s image, sources said Saturday that a Commission of Inquiry could be constituted to probe all allegations against the minister.
After accepting Khadse’s resignation, Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis Saturday announced that a committee headed by a retired high court judge will investigate allegations against him. Responding to the development, the Opposition demanded that the investigation be accorded the status of a judicial probe.
Although Fadnavis is yet to formally decide the terms of reference and the nature of investigation, sources said that the inquiry would most likely be under the Commission of Inquiry (COI) Act.
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Keen to clear his name, Khadse had sought an inquiry at the time of tendering his resignation in the morning.
Claiming that he was a victim of media trial, he demanded that all those who have levelled accusations against him present evidence before the inquiry committee.
An investigation under the COI Act will allow the investigation panel to summon witnesses and complainants to present evidence. Sources said that the BJP was keen to project that it had zero-tolerance against corruption, even as it tries to bail out Khadse from the mess.
“The terms of reference will mostly include investigating all allegations levelled against Khadse,” a source said, requesting anonymity. But an inquiry under the CoI is expected to take longer since it almost functions like a court.