Anil Deshmukh has serious allegations against him in the money laundering case
After grilling Anil Deshmukh for more than 12 hours, The Enforcement Directorate (ED) arrested the former Maharashtra Home Minister in an alleged money-laundering case. The arrest was on expected lines.
The development came a day after the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) nabbed a middleman Santosh Jagtap from Thane, who was an alleged conduit in the corruption deals and evading arrest.
Earlier Deshmukh, a senior Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) leader was missing and the ED had issued a lookout notice for him. On Monday afternoon Deshmukh presented himself at the ED office for a probe into the allegations of Rs.100 crore extortion levelled by former Mumbai Police Commissioner, Param Bir Singh.
Earlier, the former Maharashtra Home Minister on Monday morning went to the ED office for the multi-agencies probe into the allegations of extortion and corruption hurled against him by former Mumbai Police Commissioner Param Bir Singh.
On June 25, 2021, ED carried out a search at the residence of Mr. Deshmukh and his son and issued summons against him, requiring him to remain present on an assigned date.
Subsequently, two more summons were issued on June 28 and July 2. On all three occasions, Mr. Deshmukh sent his authorized representative with a written reply. On July 30, the ED sent the fourth summons, and then the agency issued an order of provisional attachment on July 16, 2021.
Deshmukh had moved to the Bombay High Court but got no relief, while his case is pending before the Supreme Court, even as the agencies have summoned his wife Aarti and their son Hrishikesh for probes, while the ED has attached portions of his properties worth Rs.4.20 crore.
“I respect the courts…I have voluntarily decided to come to the ED for the probe. But I want to ask where is Param Bir Singh who levelled the false allegations against me,” said Deshmukh in a recorded statement before he went to the central agency accompanied by his lawyer.
“Despite my prompt replies to the notices issued, the ED-CBI have raided all my homes (Mumbai-Nagpur), my family members, my associates. Canards were also being spread that I am absconding for the ED, but I have come here today on my own,” Deshmukh said, in an indirect swipe at the opposition Bharatiya Janata Party.
He pointed out how Singh, the man who hurled the fake charges at him, is ‘untraceable’ and has reportedly sneaked out of the country according to some reports in the media.
A senior NCP leader, Deshmukh came under a cloud in April 2020 after Singh’s letter to the Maharashtra Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray alleging that he (Deshmukh) had set an Rs.100-crore collection target for the former dismissed cop, Sachin Vaze.
Earlier, the ED arrested Deshmukh’s former close aides Sanjeev Palande and Kundan Shinde, followed by the CBI’s nabbing of Jagtap amid speculation that the ex-Minister could face arrest.
The BJP state President, Chandrakant Patil welcomed the move saying that “actually, Deshmukh had no options left” but to appear before the ED as he realized that the long arms of the law will ultimately catch up with him.
[With Inputs from IANS]
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