Social activist Anna Hazare today told a special CBI court in Mumbai that a contract has been put out to kill him for speaking out against the corruption in the Terna Sugar Factory in Osmanabad.
Deposing as a prosecution witness in the ongoing murder trial of Congress leader Pawan Raje Nimbalkar before Special Judge Anand Yavalkar, Anna Hazare said that after he learnt about the death threats, he filed a police complaint
Former Minister and NCP leader Padamsinh Patil, a prime accused in the sensational 2006 killing of his cousin Pawan Raje Nimbalkar, is linked to the Osmanabad-based sugar factory and is currently the President of the Terna Public Charitable Trust.
Anna Hazare said that before filing the complaint, he had also informed the Prime Minister Narendra Modi and the Maharashtra Chief Minister about the risk to his life, but no action was initiated, since Padamsinh Patil is related to Sharad Pawar.
Anna Hazare he had returned his Padma Shri and Vriksha Mitra honours, in protest against the inaction, which he followed by sitting on a hunger strike. After that, the government appointed an enquiry commission, headed by a a retired Supreme Court judge.
Later, one of the accused in the case had given a statement, detailing conspiracy to eliminate the social worker.
"Patil threatened me with dire consequences and pressurised me to withdraw my complaints in the matter. Once his men came to my office and offered me a blank cheque," he told the court.
After objections by the defence lawyers, Anna Hazare said in the cross-examination that he had no knowledge about Pawan Raje Nimbalkar's killing, case except what he had learnt through media reports.
A prominent Congress leader, Pawan Raje Nimbalkar and his driver Samad Qazi were shot dead by two men on a bike, near Navi Mumbai in 2006.
Initially, the case was investigated by the Maharashtra Police but later the Bombay High Court transferred it to the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI).
Padamsinh Patil, 80, had to quit as state minister after he named among the prime accused in the case and was present in the court on Tuesday.
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