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Caste panel gives clean chit to ex-NCB officer Sameer Wankhede, says he is from SC community not Muslim


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MUMBAI: Former Mumbai zonal director of the Narcotics Control Bureau (NCB) Sameer Wankhede, who was being probed for allegedly submitting a fake caste certificate for getting a government job, was given a clean chit by the caste scrutiny committee, an official said on Saturday.

The order was issued by the Social Justice Department of the Maharashtra government on Friday, an official said.

The order says that Wankhede, an Indian Revenue Service (IRS) officer, was not a Muslim by birth and it has been proven that he belongs to Mahar caste, which is a Scheduled Caste (SC).

The issue of Wankhede’s caste was raised by former Maharashtra minister and NCP leader Nawab Malik. Applications were filed by the complainants, including political leader Manoj Sansare, Ashok Kamble and Sanjay Kamble, against Wankhede.

Mumbai district caste certificate verification committee examined the complaints and passed an order on the same on Friday.

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The order says that it was not proven that Wankhede and his father Dnyandev Wankhede renounced Hinduism and duly converted to Islam.

It is proven that Wankhede and his father-in-law belong to the Scheduled Caste that is Mahar-37, the order stated.

Complaints filed by Nawab Malik and others regarding the caste claim of Wankhede and regarding the religion of the caste certificate are not substantiated, following which complaints are being rejected due to lack of the facts in the complaint, the order said.

Wankhede had come to the limelight following the high-profile October 2021 raids by the NCB on a Mumbai cruise after which the agency had arrested Aryan Khan, son of actor Shah Rukh Khan, and 19 others and claimed to have seized some narcotics too. The NCB had later given a clean chit to Aryan Khan. 

(THE NEW INDIAN EXPRESS)