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Background

  • In his letter to Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray, ParamBir Singh accused Maharashtra Home Minister Anil Deshmukh of holding meetings with subordinate police officers including suspended Assistant Police Inspector Sachin Waze and seeking a collection of the sum of Rs. 100 Crore from 1750 bar and restaurants in Mumbai.
  • According to CBI. Singh also accused him of misdeeds.
  • In April 2021, the Bombay High Court disposed of several petitions in a single order and directed the Central Bureau of Investigation to conduct a preliminary inquiry regarding the corruption allegations against Deshmukh.
  • The State approached the Court after CBI sought a letter report of the then Commissioner State Intelligence Department regarding alleged malpractices in posting of police officers.
  • The Petition by the State was to delete the two paragraphs from the CBI's FIR against former State Home Minister Anil Deshmukh which allegedly attempt to destabilize the present government in Maharashtra.
  • The first paragraph talks about Deshmukh’s knowledge of dismissed API Waze and the second paragraph talks about corruption and political influence in the posting of police officers.

Submissions made

  • Senior Advocate Rafique Dada submitted that allowing the CBI to overlook all the police postings will demoralize the policemen. He held that CBI was trying to protect Mr. Singh. The State was examining Singh for heading the committee that reinstated Waze after he was arrested for the Ambani Terror Scare Case.
  • Dada contended that the only thing they found about Deshmukh was that ‘he had knowledge’ and did not mention Singh or Waze.
  • He argued that the CBI was mixing up the letter by Singh to the CM and other petitions heard by the Chief Justice Bench and Singh’s plea.
  • After the Court enquired as to when Singh was made the CP of Mumbai and when he made the allegations against the Home Minister, Dada submitted that he was made CP in February 2020 and he made the allegations in March this year.
  • Dada further pointed out that Singh primarily approached the Supreme Court against his transfer from Mumbai CP and when that did not work, he approached the High Court and filed a PIL. Dada submitted that Singh didn’t do anything till he was transferred.

CBIs Submissions

  • SG Mehta appearing for CBI submitted that the State relied heavily on the Mayawati case which was not applicable in the present case.
  • Mehta argued that there were specific allegations in Singh's letter regarding large-scale malpractices in the Home Minister's office related to the transfers. Mehta further argued that former API Waze was also mentioned in Param Bir Singh’s letter.
  • He also argued that the Central Bureau of Investigation would fail in its duty if it did not investigate into the two paragraphs.
  • The SG argued that the two paragraphs were linked to corruption allegations against Deshmukh and the State was in contempt of the High Court’s Order of April 5 by not producing documents relating to the police transfers.
  • Addl. SG Anil Singh for CBI asked the State why it was so scared of the investigations into the corruption allegations. He stated that the Government should come forward and extend full cooperation.

Court’s Decision

  • The Hon’ble Bombay High Court has reserved the judgment on the said plea challenging the CBI FIR against Anil Deshmukh.

What do you think of this case?

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