New Delhi: Maharashtra Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray on Tuesday remarked that Elgar Parishad and Bhima Koregaon were ‘two different’ cases as tensions seemed to escalate between Maha Vikas Aghadi (MVA) allies Shiv Sena and Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) over the Chief Minister allowing the National Investigation Agencies (NIA) to take over the probe from the Pune Police. Also Read - Elgar Parishad Case: Maharashtra to Conduct 'Parallel' Probe as Case Transferred to NIA
The Centre had last month transferred the probe into the case to the NIA, triggering major political storm. However, after initial criticism, CM Thackeray, who also heads the Sena, gave his approval to the NIA taking over the case, receiving flak from NCP chief Sharad Pawar for the same. Also Read - As Cracks Widen in Aghadi Government, Sharad Pawar to Meet NCP Ministers Today
On Tuesday, speaking on the issue, the Chief Minister said, “Elgar Parishad case and Bhima Koregaon case are two different cases. Bhima Koregaon case is related to my Dalit people and the probe related to the case has yet not been given to Centre and it will not be handed over to Centre. Centre has taken over the Elgar Parishad case.” Also Read - 'Centre And States Should Only do Respective Works,' Says Ajit Pawar as NIA Gets Bhima Koregaon Probe
The NCP had yesterday said that it will constitute a Special Investigation Team (SIT) to carry out a parallel inquiry into the case.
The Elgar Parishad-Bhima Koregaon case pertains to violence that broke out on January 1, 2018 when members of the Dalit community had gathered to observe the 200th anniversary of the Bhim-Koregan battle in which the Peshwas were defeated by the British East India troops.
It is alleged that inflammatory speeches were delivered by the members of the Elgar Parishad on December 31, 2017, which led to the violence a day later. A number of activists were arrested later that year in connection with the case.