What started with the arrest of Aryan Khan has taken yet another ugly turn and this one leads to the murky underworld. After Maharashtra cabinet minister Nawab Malik accused the Narcotics Control Bureau's (NCB) zonal director Sameer Wankhede of partnering with BJP leaders in an extortion attempt, counter allegations by BJP leader Devendra Fadnavis followed.

However, the battle now appears to have gone both personal and public between the two leaders, with Fadnavis holding a press conference against Malik.

Devendra Fadnavis

Fadnavis alleged that a plot located on prime location on LBS Road in Mumbai's Kurla was bought at a meagre sum of Rs 30 lakh whereas the market rate for similar property was Rs 2,053 per square feet in 2005 in the vicinity.

"The deal was carried out when Malik was a minister in the previous Congress-NCP government," said Malik addressing the conference and adding that he had documents of five similar property deals to substantiate his claims.

"There is a direct connection with the underworld I have documents of five property deals. Four properties purchased connected with the underworld. I will ascertain, which are the appropriate authorities in the matter, whether it is police, ED, NIA, and hand over the papers to them."

Mumbai: Maharashtra Minorities Minister Nawab Malik during a press conference on Cordelia Cruz Drugs NCB issues at Kurla in Mumbai on Sunday, November 07, 2021.
Nawab Malik in a file photo. IANS

He also said that he would hand over a copy of the documents to Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) supremo Sharad Pawar so he could be aware of what his party members were indulging in. The property in question is a 2.80-acre plot and Fadnavis said that it was purchased in 2005 from Mohammad Salim Patel, who is Dawood Ibrahim's sister Haseena Parker's frontman and from Badshah Khan who is a '93 Mumbai blast convict.

Meanwhile, a counter press conference in the offing

Reacting strongly to the allegations, Nawab Malik countered the charges in yet another media briefing on Tuesday. Denying all the charges of having bought the plot from 1993 Mumbai Blast Convict, Malik further said, "Devendra Fadnavis is trying to malign my image by connecting me to blast convicts and the underworld. They did the same by saying that drugs were recovered from my place, I will send them legal notice." He in turn accused the leader of the opposition in the state of links with the underworld, "I will expose underworld links of Devendra Fadnavis."

Will drop a hydrogen bomb: Nawab Malik

In a battle that from the very beginning that has involved the usage of provocative language, Nawab Malik on Tuesday also said, "I think his sources are weak in their game, if he would have asked, I would have given him the original land documents myself." Following this, the state cabinet minister also said, "I will drop a hydrogen bomb tomorrow morning."