Anil Deshmukh is currently under investigation by the Indian Central Bureau of Investigation and Enforcement Directorate, following accusations made by the former Mumbai Police commissioner Param Bir Singh. Since July 2021, Deshmukh remained untraceable and failed to appear before the enforcement directorate five times. Then strategically, he surrendered at the ED office and the very next day, Param Bir Singh filed an affidavit through his lawyer stating that he had no further proof and evidence to prove the allegations made by him against Deshmukh.
He was formally arrested after 12 hours of questioning after his arrest he was produced before the court and the court sent him to 4 days Enforcement Directorate remand and after the remand ended on Nov 6 the court sent him to judicial custody for 14 days. The next day the Bombay High Court set aside the judicial custody and remanded Deshmukh to ED custody till Nov 12.
Anil Deshmukh has been summoned by the Enforcement Directorate after he was accused of corruption and bribery. It is also alleged that the leader collected 4.7 crore rupees from various bars and restaurants in Mumbai, through police officer Sachin Vaze who is now dismissed. A Mumbai court has extended the remand of Vaze with Mumbai Police till November 13 in the extortion case filed by businessman Bimal Agarwal. Vaze and Singh shared a major chunk of the extortion amount; some of the extortion money was shared amongst others which are yet to be traced by investigation authorities. The police were approached with one victim and they wanted to trace the others.
The Ex-CP Param Bir Singh had accused Anil Deshmukh of asking Vaze to collect Rs 100 crore from hotels and bars in Mumbai every month, a charge which the then state home minister had consistently denied. In a tweet, Anil Deshmukh stated that he was appearing before ED officials as per the high court’s order, and questioned why Param Bir Singh had not joined the investigation. On Sunday, the CBI made the first arrest in the high-profile case, Santosh Jagtap. The agency had raided the alleged middleman’s premises in August and seized Rs 9 lakh in cash.
The ED had arrested Deshmukh’s personal assistant Kundan Shinde and personal secretary Sanjeev Palande under provisions of the PMLA. Palande is said to be a key witness in the case and was apparently privy to information regarding the alleged extortion and diversion of funds. The agency has conducted several raids in connection with the case.
Deshmukh took charge of the Home Ministry of Maharashtra in the MVA coalition government led by Uddhav Thackeray after the 2019 Maharashtra political crisis. He proposed the establishment of a specialized treatment centre for the police personnel infected during the COVID-19 pandemic. As the home minister, he tabled the proposed Shakti Bill in the Maharashtra Legislative Assembly which sought to modify provisions pertaining to sexual offences against women and children. The bill was ultimately sent for review to a committee of the Legislative Assembly after an outcry from various women’s rights groups and activists.
As a home minister, he introduced the ‘Self Balancing Electric Scooters’ (Segway) for Mumbai Police personnel that would help them while on patrolling duty. He famously attended the complaint calls at the Pune city police control room on New Year’s Eve and celebrated the same with police personnel. During his tenure, the home ministry declared Rs 5,000,000 ex gratia to the families of police personnel who lost their lives to COVID-19.
He also proffered one-rank promotion to fourteen police officers for their historic valour and courage during the 26/11 Mumbai Terror Attacks. It is claimed that he was the first-ever Home Minister of the state to visit the Regional Forensic Sciences Laboratory in Pune and spent time interacting with the staff and discussing ways to equip the Laboratory with the latest technology.
Rashmi Shukla, Commissioner of State Intelligence (COI) wrote a letter to the Maharashtra DGP, Subodh Kumar Jaiswal, on 25 August 21, claiming a network of brokers involved in transferring police officers in exchange for money. The housing minister Jitendra Awhad claimed that Shukla had tapped phones illegally.
Deshmukh resigned from the post of the Home Minister of Maharashtra in the MVA coalition government led by CM Uddhav Thackeray after the Bombay high court directed the Central Bureau of Investigation to conduct a preliminary inquiry into allegations of corruption and misconduct levelled by former commissioner Param Bir Singh against Deshmukh. So far nothing is proven against him, he is expected to get bail and may resume back to his portfolio soon. On the other hand, the government is on the lookout for Param Bir Singh, but rumours are that Singh has already reached safe heavens with the help of authorities and no sign of return unless this storm settles. Waze is already in trouble for Mansukh Hiren’s murder, so he’s getting out of jail is impossible. It would be very interesting to see how this entire drama unfolds further.