'BJP will launch campaign against 'octroi mafia' in MCGM'

Indirectly targeting the ally Shiv Sena ahead of the next year's elections to the Municipal Corporation of Greater Mumbai, the BJP today alleged "octroi mafia" were siphoning off tax of Rs 2,000 crore every year.

"Very soon there will be an end to the octroi mafia prevalent in the MCGM. We will start our campaign against them today," BJP MP Kirit Somaiya said here.

"If you get stomach pain again due to our stand against the octroi mafia, do not bring up my wife like the last time and (instead) fight me based on the facts," he said.

He was apparently referring to the Shiv Sena mouthpiece 'Saamana' which recently levelled allegations against Somaiya and his wife regarding Slum Rehabilitation Authority projects.

MCGM is controlled by Sena-BJP combine.

Somaiya said the civic corporation gets over Rs 6,300 crore of octroi a year. "About Rs 2,000 crore of octroi gets syphoned off. Our fight is not against a specific party, but against the mafia. Even the Shiv Sena has good corporators who are worried about the prevalent corruption," he said.

"First we took on the nulla mafia, then road mafia, the (garbage) dumping and tanker mafia and now octroi mafia," he added.

Somaiya also said he would be filing a defamation case against the owner and the editor of Saamana on June 1.

"I demanded an apology from them, but they failed to tender it. I will make Saamana apologies," he asserted.

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