Pune: Former deputy mayor and Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) corporator Deepak Mankar, who is considered a strong Maratha face in the Pune Municipal Corporation (PMC), has been caught in controversy again. Till date, the party has not discussed the issue but office-bearers consider that it may affect the party’s image in the forthcoming assembly elections. Mankar is one of the aspirants of city unit chief of NCP as well as interested in an assembly seat in the city.
Mankar, builder Sudheer Karnataki, their accomplice Bhole and others were booked by the police on Sunday for abetting the suicide of social worker Jitendra Jagtap. The accused allegedly threatened Jagtap after a dispute regarding a plot in Rasta Peth. Jagtap had committed suicide by jumping in front of a train in Ghorpadi on Saturday.
Earlier, when he was in the Congress Party, the crime branch, Pune, had arrested Mankar on July 2, 2009, for allegedly trying to grab the land of retired professor Yashwant Natu (65) of Shukrawar Peth. Mankar was released on bail on September 15. He was acquitted later in the case.
He was also in the race of Congress Pune city unit chief’s post but he didn’t get it due to Natu case.
Mankar joined NCP after 2014 assembly elections. NCP gave a ticket to him for Kasba constituency in 2014 against Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leader Girish Bapat.
NCP leader Ajit Pawar has declared that a new NCP city unit chief will be choosen soon. Mankar is interested in Kasba and Kothrud assembly constituencies in the forthcoming state polls.
A NCP official said, “The party has to keep its image clean for the state elections. Hence, the party will take some decision. The party will also check the status of the case before taking any decision.”
Mankar has taken initiative for the Shivshrusti project. He had given an ultimatum to the State government that if they fail to take a decision on Shivshrusti, he will stop Metro work in Kothrud. The State government took a quick decision on Shivshrusti. He is one of the senior corporators in the civic body and represents Kothrud ward.