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Maharashtra minister Naik quits, faces imminent arrest
May 13, 2006 01:26 IST
Maharashtra Transport Minister Swarup Singh Naik quit tonight and faced imminent arrest after the Supreme Court rejected his plea for a review of the one-month imprisonment awarded to him for committing contempt of court.
A Bench headed by Justice Y K Sabharwal also dismissed the plea of state Additional Chief Secretary Ashok Khot who was sentenced to one month simple imprisonment along with the minister for secretly giving licence for operation of six wood-based industries in 2004 despite a ban on the same.
The verdict was pronounced after holding chamber proceedings on the review petition filed by them.
When the license was granted for operating the saw mills by them, Naik was Environment and Forest Minister and Khot was Principal Secretary in the Ministry.
The Supreme Court in had in 2002 banned the operation of sawmills, but Nayak and Khot gave licenses to six such mills in violation of the order.
On his return from Delhi to Mumbai, Naik, faxed his resignation to Chief Minister Vilasrao Deshmukh's office, official sources said adding the minister's resignation has been forwarded to Governor S M Krishna for approval.
The arrest warrant for Naik has been received by the state government and it would be executed," state Chief Secretary D K Sankaran told PTI here when asked about the course of action if Naik does not surrender.
Sankaran said the arrest warrant has been received for Khot also.