Maharashtra minister Dhananjay Munde has denied allegations of rape by a woman, claiming that she has been in a relationship with her sister for years. The allegations landed him in a dispute called by the opposition BJP for his resignation.
The Minister of State for Social Justice, Dhananjay Munde, said in a Facebook post that he was being blackmailed by the rape accused and his sister. He said that he had also filed a police complaint in November.
Mr Munde, 45, said he had been in a relationship with the woman’s sister since 2003 and has two children. The Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) leader said his family also accepted the relationship. “My family, wife and friends knew this matter. In this mutual relationship, we were blessed with a son and a daughter. My family, wife and my children have also taken these children as family and approved. Is, “he said,” this entire case has been made for blackmailing, liars and defamation, so please do not believe such a charge (sic) “.
Following the minister’s entry of her relationship with the woman on Facebook, the women’s wing of the BJP wrote a letter to Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray and demanded his dismissal.
The 37-year-old woman, an aspiring singer, said she wrote to the Mumbai Police Commissioner on 10 January, alleging that Mr Munde had raped her repeatedly in 2006. In a tweet tagging the top NCP leaders including Sharad Pawar, he said that he had approached the police earlier but his complaint was not accepted. He also requested help from former Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis, alleging that his life was in danger.
Mr Munde said the woman’s allegations were part of a conspiracy against him. The alleged blackmail, he claimed, began in 2019 and he had not only gone to the police since then, but also requested the Bombay High Court to keep any abusive material against him.
Senior Maharashtra BJP leader Kirit Somaiya said that Munde should stay out of the Maharashtra cabinet until he is (clean).
Mr. Munde is the nephew of senior BJP leader and former Union Minister Gopinath Munde, who died in a road accident in 2014. He left the BJP in 2013 and joined the NCP over an intense rivalry with cousin Pankaja Munde, Gopinath Munde’s daughter.