THANE: Maharashtra Housing Minister and NCP leader Jitendra Awhad was arrested on Thursday and later released on bail in a case of alleged assault on a social media user at his house.
Awhad appeared at the Vartak Nagar police station in Thane city in connection with the case on Thursday, said a senior police official.
His statement was recorded and he was produced before a magistrate who released the minister on a cash bond of Rs 10,000 and one surety, the official added.
Anand Karmuse, the complainant, had alleged that he was taken to Awhad’s bungalow and beaten up in the minister’s presence over a social media post.
The Bombay High Court had directed the Thane police to conduct proper probe and take necessary action after Karmuse sought Awhad to be made an accused.
Karmuse, a civil engineer, had alleged that some police personnel visited him on the evening of April 5, 2020, and told him that he would have to go to the police station, but instead took him to Awhad’s bungalow.
At the bungalow, he was beaten up by ten to fifteen men over a morphed picture of the minister he had shared on Facebook, Karmuse said.
Awhad was present during the incident, he alleged.
The minister had denied the allegations.
As per a police statement, a case has been registered at Vartak Nagar police station under IPC sections 324 (assault), 365 (kidnapping) and 506 (criminal intimidation).
BJP leader and former MP Kirit Somaiya demanded that Awhad be sacked from the cabinet.
Leader of Opposition in the Maharashtra Legislative Council Pravin Darekar alleged that the arrest and subsequent bail seemed be “staged by the state government”.
“He was merely taken to police station and immediately given bail,” the BJP leader said.