Woman withdraws #MeToo complaint against Maharashtra Minister
Mumbai, January 22, 2021
In a surprise development, a Mumbai-based woman, who had levelled sensational allegations of rape against Maharashtra Social Justice Minister Dhananjay Munde, has withdrawn her complaint, officials said here on Friday.
The woman informed the police that she was not keen on pursuing the case against the minister, without citing reasons for her abrupt move.
The police have now directed her to submit a formal notarised affidavit to the effect to enable the police complete the relevant formalities in the matter, the officials said.
After her allegations opened up a political Pandora's Box last week, the woman had slammed what she termed efforts to malign her image and asked why "these people did not come forward before".
While several opposition Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leaders clamoured for Munde's removal from the Cabinet and a thorough probe into her allegations, the Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) stood behind the beleaguered minister, opting to wait for the outcome of the police investigation.
Senior BJP women's wing leader Chitra Wagh on Friday demanded that the police should book the woman under IPC Section 192 for making false allegations against the minister, to set an example.
BJP Mumbai Vice-President Krishna Hegde, who had lodged a complaint against the same woman last week for attempts to "honey-trap" him a few years ago, said the latest developments will be a huge relief to Munde.
"This is the first #MeToo case in state politics and all must fight against such false allegations as ultimately truth will prevail," Hegde said.
The ruling Maha Vikas Aghadi allies -- Shiv Sena and Congress -- have not yet reacted to the development.