The Enforcement Directorate on Tuesday morning raided the residences and official premises of the Shiv Sena MLA Pratap Sarnaik. The search is being conducted at 10 places across Mumbai and Thane with the links to the aforementioned Shiv Sena leader.
The raids were carried out reportedly in connection with a money laundering case involving Shiv Sena MLA Pratap Sarnaik. However, the ED is yet to officially confirm that the raids are related to a money laundering case.
Sarnaik, an MLA from the Ovala-Majiwada constituency in Thane, had recently demanded that actor Kangana Ranaut be booked under sedition charges for likening Mumbai to Pakistan-Occupied-Kashmir.
Sarnaik had threatened to break Kangana Ranaut’s mouth
“MP Sanjay Raut issued a mild warning to Kangana. If she dares to come here(Mumbai), our brave warriors will break her mouth. I will demand Kangana to be booked for sedition for comparing Mumbai, the city which creates industrialists and film stars, to PoK,” Sarnaik had tweeted in Marathi.
Sarnaik’s tweet came after Kangana alleged that Shiv Sena leader Sanjay Raut had threatened her. With the Azadi graffiti defiling the streets of Mumbai, Kangana had posted a tweet, comparing the city to Pakistan-occupied-Kashmir which invited the wrath of Shiv Sena leaders.
After his comments, NCW chairperson Rekha Sharma had demanded the arrest of the Shiv Sena MLA for allegedly threatening Kangana Ranaut.
Pratap Sarnaik, a vocal critic of Opposition parties and a staunch defender of Shiv Sena
Besides, Firebrand politician Sarnaik has also been vocal against the opposition in Maharashtra. He had vigorously defended the allegations made against Maharashtra Environment Minister Aaditya Thackeray and also asked for a drug probe against Kangana Ranaut for her earlier comment on rampancy of drug consumption in Bollywood. Sarnaik also brought in privilege motions against Kangana Ranaut and Arnab Goswami in the previous session of the Assembly.
Sarnaik is also known for holding considerable clout in the Thane region and for his long rivalry with NCP’s Jitendra Awhad, who is the currently a cabinet minister in the Thackeray government. However, after Shiv Sena and NCP joined hands to form Maha Vikas Aghadi government in Maharashtra, Sarnaik and Awhad had come together and were recently seen in a joint press conference over a housing scheme launched by the NCP leader.