Uddhav's close aide under ED lens MLA Ravindra Waikar joins Shinde-led Shiv Sena

Ravindra Waikar
Ravindra Waikar

Mumbai | Shiv Sena (UBT) MLA Ravindra Waikar, who is being probed by the Enforcement Directorate in connection with alleged misuse of a civic plot to build a luxury hotel, on Sunday joined the Shiv Sena led by Chief Minister Eknath Shinde.

It is a jolt to Shiv Sena (UBT) chief Uddhav Thackeray since Waikar, the MLA from Mumbai's Jogeshwari area, is a close aide and was present in a meeting with the former in the Mumbai North West parliamentary seat a day earlier.

Waikar joined the Shinde-led group at 'Varsha', the official residence of the chief minister in Malabar Hill.

Waikar is a former standing committee chairman of the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation, a four time corporator and has been MLA from Jogeshwari for four terms.

He is being probed by the ED in a case registered for allegedly misleading the BMC and obtaining permission fraudulently between January and July 2021 to construct a luxury hotel on a plot along Jogeshwari-Vikhroli Link Road earmarked for sports and entertainment purposes.

As per the FIR, the plot was allotted to Waikar and others for public utilisation but they allegedly used it for commercial purposes to earn several crore rupees.

Speaking after joining the CM's faction, Waikar claimed he had worked in the Shiv Sena for 50 years and had switched sides for the development of his constituency, which needs roads and water supply and where many works had been held up due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

"Shinde is taking quick decisions on development works. If these works are not completed, I cannot face my people," Waikar said.

Waikar joined the Shiv Sena which is inspired by the ideals of late Bal Thackeray, the CM said.

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