Nationalist Congress Party leader and Maharashtra minister Nawab Malik on Sunday said he stood by his claims that the Narcotics Control Bureau’s (NCB) Mumbai zonal director Sameer Wankhede was a Muslim by birth and had produced a bogus certificate to get government job.
IMAGE: Maharashtra minister Nawab Malik. Photograph: Deepak Salvi/ANI Photo
Speaking to reporters in Mumbai, Malik said he was not fighting a battle of caste or religion, but highlighting how a government job was obtained on a ‘bogus’ caste certificate.
For the past several days, Malik has been targeting Wankhede, who had led a raid on a cruise ship here earlier this month during which drugs were allegedly recovered.
The minister has repeatedly claimed that the entire operation on the cruise ship on October 2, during which actor Shah Rukh Khan’s son Aryan Khan was held among others, was ‘fake’.
Wankhede had earlier refuted the minister’s allegations against him.
On Sunday, Malik claimed that even though the Wankhedes were Muslims, they started ‘changing their identity from 2015’ after Sameer Wankhede came to limelight when he stopped some Bollywood celebrities at the Mumbai airport.
“On their social media accounts, Dawood Wankhede (the NCB official’s father) became DK Wankhede and later Dyandev. Yasmeen Wankhede (the NCB official’s sister) became Jasmine and she divorced her husband, who is a Muslim and is now settled in Europe,” the NCP leader said.
He also took an objection to National Commission for Scheduled Castes vice chairman Arun Haldar’s statement that Wankhedes never converted.
“Haldar may be a BJP leader, but he is appointed to a constitutional post. He should verify all facts of what information he has been given, prepare his report and submit it to Parliament, instead of coming before the media and commenting that Wankhede did not convert. A person who is not from a Scheduled Caste cannot claim benefits,” he said.
“Sameer Wankhede never converted because he is a Muslim by birth. His father had converted and both children are born Muslims. I am not fighting a battle of caste and religion, but I am highlighting how a government job was obtained on bogus caste certificate,” Malik said.
Family’s safety in jeopardy: Wankhede’s wife
Meanwhile, Wankhede’s wife Kranti Redkar Wankhede on Sunday said the ‘safety of her husband and family is in jeopardy’ and asked for security.
Speaking to ANI, Redkar said, “The safety of Sameer Wankhede and her family members is in jeopardy. Three people conducted a recce of the house some days back. These people are very dangerous what they can do, have no clue about that.”
The National Commission for Scheduled Castes Vice Chairmen Arun Haldar also visited the residence of NCB officer Sameer Wankhede who is in charge of the investigation in the drugs-on-cruise case.
Redkar said Arun Haldar came here to see some original documents. Now the investigation will be conducted against the people who were making allegations against us, she said.
Speaking on her family safety, Sameer Wankhede’s wife said, “We will provide the CCTV footage to the police. Security should be provided to the family.”
“My children are very young, the safety is very important in that perspective. When we (Sameer and I) are not home who will take care of their safety?” she asked.