Maharashtra Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis has given the anti-corruption bureau the go ahead to conduct an open probe against senior NCP leaders Ajit Pawar, Sunil Tatkare and Chhagan Bhujbal. This was in response to a public interest litigation filed by Nagpur based Janhit Mach that the erstwhile Congress-NCP government had opposed. The move is seen as a huge setback for the three NCP leaders. In the litigation it is alleged that owing to rampant corruption, the cost of irrigation projects in the Vidarbha region increased by some crores, and in the case of some of the projects the costs increased almost 33 times. Now that CM Fadnavis has granted permission to go ahead with the probe, a high-level team led by ACB director general Praveen Dixit, will record statements of irrigation officials and also the NCP leaders after which they will decide whether to register a criminal case.