Mumbai: RTI activist Ravi Barhate on Wednesday alleged that NCP legislator Jitendra Awhad had purchased tribal land at Yeoor in adjoining Thane in 2006 and made an illegal construction on the plot, a charge denied by the latter.
The Pune-based activist further claimed that Awhad, a former Maharashtra minister, did not disclose details about the land in question in his election affidavit, which has details about a candidate's assets.
Barhate has taken the matter to Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis.
Awhad, the MLA from Kalwa-Mumbra in Thane, however, rubbished the allegations and dubbed Barhate as a "blackmailer".
Speaking to reporters here, Barhate claimed that Awhad bought the land, measuring 33,245-sq.Ft, at Yeoor, a forested area, on March 10, 2006, from one Hari Jasumal Thakur, a tribal.
The NCP leader is currently in possession of the property but hid the fact while submitting his affidavit to the Election Commission ahead of the 2009 Assembly polls, alleged Barhate.
Producing the property card obtained by him last month, Barhate maintained that the document itself was evidence as records signed by the local talathi (a low-ranking revenue employee) show the name of Jitendra Satish Awhad.
Barhate claimed he had filed a complaint with the Kalwa Police Station on July 22, 2015, but the Senior Inspector there refused to treat it as a case involving a cognisable offence.
"(The) Chief Minister took cognisance of my application, which I had submitted through the CM's office. This morning, he called me and assured that proper action (would be taken) in the matter," Barhate said, adding, "the Chief Minster has forwarded the matter to the secretary concerned."
The activist has demanded that the EC disqualify Awhad on the grounds that he had filed a false affidavit. The legislator should also face action for violating law (about non-tribals not being allowed to buy land belonging to tribals) and making illegal construction on the said plot.
Denying the charges, Awhad said although he had sold the Yeoor property in 2009, that was well before the Assembly polls of that year. Since then, the land had been sold out to two other buyers.
"Barhate gathers false and incomplete information. He has no moral right to blame politicians. He is infamous in Pune for these activities. He is not an RTI activist, he is a blackmailer," charged Awhad.