Maharashtra Home Minister Anil Deshmukh in a meeting of the Maha Vikas Aghadi (MVA) government on Wednesday asked Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray to probe extortion charges levelled against him by former Mumbai Police Commissioner Param Bir Singh, according to sources. The former Mumbai top cop accused that Deshmukh had asked Sachin Vaze for collecting Rs 100 crore per month from bars, restaurants, other establishments in the city.
As per sources, Anil Deshmukh himself asked Uddhav Thackeray to probe Param Bir’s allegations against him. Following this development, a committee of retired judges may be asked to probe extortion charges against Anil Deshmukh. The announcement may take place on Thursday.
On Saturday, former Commissioner of Mumbai Police, Param Bir Singh, in a tell-all letter to the Chief Minister, had made explosive claims against Anil Deshmukh alleging that he had asked Sachin Vaze to collect Rs 100 crore per month for him.
Earlier in the day, the Supreme Court asked Param Bir Singh to move the Bombay High Court with his petition, where he has unleashed a barrage of allegations against Maharashtra Home Minister Anil Deshmukh.
Singh, who was represented by senior advocate Mukul Rohatgi, urged the top court to direct a fair CBI investigation into the acts of Deshmukh in abuse of his official position.
A bench headed by Justice Sanjay Kishan Kaul said there seems to be some hunky-dory between the concerned parties going on for a long time, and asked Singh’s lawyer why he has not made Deshmukh a party in the case despite levelling allegations against him. Rohatgi said he will make Deshmukh a party in the matter, and urged the top court to hear the matter, as the plea raises very serious issues.
The top court noted that Singh has made serious allegations against the home minister in the Maharashtra government. “We have no doubt the matter is serious affecting the administration at large…We say it is a serious issue. We are also noticing it…if you want an independent probe the High Court can also do it. You should move the High Court under Article 226,” Justice Kaul told Rohatgi.
In a petition in the Supreme Court, Singh has accused Deshmukh of adopting corrupt practices in posting or transfer of police officers to implicating BJP leaders in MP Mohan Delkar’s suicide.
Singh’s lawyer insisted that the top court should direct the High Court to take up the matter on Wednesday, as there is some intrinsic evidence in the nature of CCTV footage in possession of ATS, which they are not handing over to the NIA. Rohatgi said he will move before the Bombay High Court Wednesday afternoon with a plea for an urgent hearing on Thursday.