Maharashtra cop thrashed by legislators faces departmental probe

Mumbai, April 18 (IANS) A committee appointed to probe the beating up, allegedly by legislators, of a sub-inspector of police within the Maharashtra assembly premises last month recommended, Thursday, a departmental inquiry against the police officer.

The recommendations also include revocation of suspension of three of the five legislators who were suspended after the incident.

The thrashing of the police officer March 19 had created a furore inside and outside the legislature.

Assembly Speaker Dilip Walse-Patil read out the recommendations of the committee headed by senior legislator Ganpatrao Deshmukh, which probed the matter.

The committee termed as “objectionable” the behaviour of the traffic assistant sub-inspector Sachin Suryawanshi while dealing with legislator Kshitij Thakur, who had been stopped for speeding on the Rajiv Gandhi Bandra-Worli Sea Link March 18.

Noting that Suryawanshi was beaten up inside the legislature premises, the committee found that he was not seriously injured, according to a report submitted by a medical panel.

The committee also said that there was no proof of involvement of three suspended legislators, Bharatiya Janata Party’s Jaykumar Rawal, Shiv Sena’s Rajan Salvi and Independent Pradeep Jaiswal, in the thrashing of Suryawanshi. It thus recommended that their suspension be revoked during the current session.

Regarding the two other legislators, Kshitij Thakur and Maharashtra Navnirman Sena’s Ram Kadam, the committee said criminal cases had already been filed against them.

Accordingly, it suggested that their suspension too be revoked at the beginning of the monsoon session.

It has also suggested setting up a special cell headed by the state chief secretary to monitor and review the conduct of government officials towards elected representatives.

The committee has recommended that the CCTV network in the legislature premises be upgraded and strengthened.

The Deshmukh-headed all-party committee included legislators Sadashiv Patil, Nawab Malik, Dilip Sopal, R.M. Wani, Girish Bapat and Uttamrao Dikle, and it held seven meetings during which 17 witnesses were questioned.

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