Updated: February 26, 2021 4:09:21 pm
Abhinav Delkar, the son of Mohan Delkar – the MP from the Union Territory of Dadra and Nagar Haveli who committed suicide in Mumbai two days ago – has claimed that the constant harassment meted out to his father and his supporters from the local administration and his father’s helplessness at not being able to help his supporters led him to take his own life.
“My father was under tremendous pressure. The local administration had made things very difficult for him and our supporters. A feeling of helplessness had crept into him as in spite of being an MP, he was unable to help his own supporters,” Abhinav told The Indian Express.
Interestingly, Delkar had left Dadra and Nagar Haveli after telling his family that he was going to attend a court hearing of one of his supporters, Indrajeet Parmar, who was recently booked in a case lodged under the Prevention of Anti Social Activities Act. He was subsequently arrested and is at present in jail. Abhinav claimed that Parmar was framed.
When asked, SP Hareshwar Swami of Dadra and Nagar Haveli said, “It is a matter of bootlegging. I would not want to say anything now, as the case will take its own course.”
An associate of Delkar, who did not wish to be named, said: “Two other party workers were to leave on Monday for Parmar’s court proceedings and Delkar opted to leave a day earlier.”
On Thursday, Abhinav wrote a letter to Prime Minister Narendra Modi, requesting him to remove Praful Patel from the post of Administrator of DNH.
A copy of letter written in Gujarati is with The Indian Expres, in which Abhinav Delkar said, “My father Mohan Delkar has been mentally stressed for some time and the purpose of writing this letter is to get justice… The statement given by home minister of Maharashtra on February 24 states that DNH administrator is directly involved in forcing my dad to commit suicide… we the people of DNH cannot bear accept such a person… we request you to immediately remove administrator Praful Patel from DNH. I have full faith in the investigation done by Mumbai police… this is an appeal from a son to you…”
Abhinav said that many of Delkar’s supporters and tribal workers had been sacked from their jobs in a local government school because they had supported him in the zilla parishad elections. “These people would come to my father seeking help. But he was helpless as the local administration was not willing to give either them or my father a fair hearing,” he added.
An administrative officer said, “People were sacked as the jobs were not regularised. They have availed all their legal resources and lost everywhere because we were right.”
Abhinav also claimed that his father was troubled after the district administration served notices on the SSR college — set up by the MP — citing irregularities and had even turned up with JCB machines to initiate demolition.
“Over 350 police personnel had turned up outside our college with bulldozers on June 27, 2020 to demolish the structure. They stopped only when my father managed to get a stay from the court,” Abhinav said.
To this, the administrative officer said, “Some parts of the college is built on government leased land that they had surrendered 10 years ago. They wished to claim it back but were not successful.”
Abhinav claimed that the local administration had stopped adhering to protocol that needs to be followed in case of an elected MP and that Delkar was not even being invited for government functions. He said that while the local MP usually addresses the constituency during the liberation day festivities of Dadra and Nagar Haveli – celebrated on August 2 – his father was not being allowed to give a speech.
“Over the last couple of years, the administration had stopped him from giving a speech. They did not even invite him when Nityanand Rai, minister of home affairs, had come for an official function… this is against protocol. He felt humiliated.” Abhinav claimed that Delkar had raised these issues in the Parliament but no one helped him. The administrative officer said, “An order (the district collector will be felicitated) was issued by the Union government and we just adhered to it.”
Abhinav further said that his father decided to die by suicide in Mumbai because he was aware that he would not get justice in Dadra and Nagar Haveli. “He knew that if he had to end his life here, the suicide note would have vanished and no case would have been registered,” he said, adding that earlier, two government employees had died by suicide owing to harassment. “One of them had even left a suicide note behind naming officials, but nothing happened.”
With inputs from kamaal saiyed
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