Rajdeep Sardesai fires back at CM Fadnavis over Maria’s transfer

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Rajdeep Sardesai and Devendra Fadnavis
Rajdeep Sardesai and Devendra Fadnavis

After CM Devendra Fadnavis slammed senior journalist Rajdeep Sardesai on Rakesh Maria’s transfer, Sardesai, in the latest reply, said, he refused to believe the argument posed by the Maharashtra CM that Maria’s transfer was a routine one.

He writes, “ Truth is, almost no senior police officer I have spoken to is willing to buy this theory. Those who have retired have openly scoffed at this explanation, those in service are naturally hesitant to speak out. The conjecture is that Mr Maria’s transfer has something to do with the ongoing Sheena Bora investigation or a personal animus.”

“You seem to suggest that his role as commissioner in a murder case was purely supervisory. Maybe it was, or should be. But the fact is, your government after transferring him to DG Home Guards in the morning, the very same evening claims that he will continue to oversee the Bora investigation. This, even as a new police commissioner and another  fine officer Ahmed Javed takes charge. Can there be anything more confusing?,” Sardesai asked.

Rajdeep also asks why the case had been suddenly transferred to the CBI even after the Mumbai Police claimed in court that it had clinching evidence. “The Mumbai police claimed in court that it had clinching evidence while seeking remand against the accused; then why is the case being transferred out? Is the Mumbai police incompetent, is there a cover-up, or is the case throwing up new dimensions which perhaps might need fresh investigation? Is a journalist not to ask such questions without his motives being questioned? ,” he writes.

Earlier, Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis slammed Rajdeep Sardesai for linking the Sheen Bora murder case with Rakesh Maria’s transfer. Fadnavis  publicly defended the transfer of the former Mumbai Police chief, saying he didn’t see anything wrong in appointing a new person before the festive season started, instead of shifting him midway.

Fadnavis, in an open letter written and published in Hindustan Times, said, “If the government thought that instead of changing a police commissioner in the midst of festivities it was better to put a new person in place before the festive season started, what’s so wrong about it?”

“In the case of Rakesh Maria, you (Rajdeep) seem to be confused. Your post-script says the Sheena Bora murder case should not have assumed the kind of importance it was accorded by the media. Then why did you choose to write on it, linking it with the transfer of the city police chief?,” Fadnavis wrote.

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