The controversy surrounding Rakesh Maria's appointment as the Mumbai police commissioner refuses to die.
On Tuesday, activists of the Republican Party of India (Athavale) staged a demonstration at Azad Maidan protesting against the "injustice" done to additional DGP Vijay Kamble.
They alleged the Congress-NCP government chose to ignore the fact that Kamble was the senior-most among the three contenders (Maria and Ahmed Javed were the other two). Some said Kamble was overlooked for the commissioner's post because he is a Dalit.
Senior BJP leader Vinod Tawde too slammed the government for ignoring Kamble.
But home minister RR Patil rejected the allegation saying Maria was handpicked for the post after taking into account various factors. Patil said the government found Maria best-suited for the tough job.
Kamble took charge as the Thane commissioner on Tuesday. He rubbished allegations that he had deliberately delayed taking charge of the new post because he was unhappy.
On Monday, Patil warned Kamble and Javed of action if they did not take charge of their new posts within a week. Kamble said he had obtained permission for two days' leave even before the appointment issue cropped up. "I was on leave to attend a wedding," he said.
A few days before Maria was named the commissioner, the Aam Aadmi Party requested Javed, who is now DG (home guards), to join the party and contest the Lok Sabha elections.
AAP leader Mayank Gandhi said: "We met Javed and requested him to join the party. He is an honest, upright police officer."
On Tuesday, Javed refused to reply directly if he would quit the force. "For now, I am just taking a break," he said.
Javed has been on leave since Maria was made the new police chief. About the AAP offer, the officer said: "In my position as a police officer many people come to meet me with many offers during the course of the day. I have no plans to join politics at the moment."