In a relief to former Mumbai top cop Param Bir Singh, the Bombay High Court has dismissed a petition filed by a social worker seeking NIA probe into Singh’s alleged role in the Antilia bomb scare and businessman Mansukh Hiren’s murder cases.
This was the second petition filed by Sharma seeking similar order which has been dismissed.
Petitioner had alleged that Singh manipulated evidence
Sharma had filed the plea claiming that Singh manipulated evidence and influenced the high-profile investigation. He alleged that Singh had reinstated officers Sachin Waze and Pradeep Sharma, and displayed a pattern that necessitated further investigation into Singh’s role in the alleged crime.
While dismissing the petition by one Parshuram Sharma, the HC noted that the NIA, which had the expertise, probed the case and found no evidence to book Singh.
“The crime in question is being investigated by a specialised agency i.e. the NIA, and the expertise of NIA cannot be doubted,” observed a division bench led by Justice Ajey Gadkari.
Petitioner neither lawyer nor investigator: Court
The court also noted that Sharma lacked expertise and was neither a lawyer nor an investigator.
Besides, the judges also took note of Sharma’s previous petition, seeking a similar direction, was dismissed by the HC. On March 23, 2023, a bench headed by Justice Sunil Shukre (now retired) had dismissed Sharma’s plea observing that “hearsay evidence” do not disclose commission of a cognisable offence.
Advocate Sandesh Patil, appearing for the NIA, submitted a verification report before the court which pointed out that addresses of Sharma’s residence and office, Jivan Jyot Welfare Organisation, provided in the petition are fake. It also mentioned Sharma’s political affiliation.
“The verification report states that the petitioner is presently affiliated with a political party,” the court added.
Antilia bomb scare case
On February 25, 2021, a Mahindra Scorpio laden with explosives was found outside Antilia, industrialist Mukesh Ambani’s south Mumbai residence. It also contained a note threatening the industrialist and his family. On March 5, 2021, Hiran’s body was found at Rati Bunder in Thane. Hiran owned the SUV in which explosives were found. Former police officers Pradeep Sharma and Sachin Vaze are accused in the cases. The case is being probed by the National Investigation Agency (NIA).
Sharma also relied on the HC order dismissing Pradeep Sharma’s bail plea in the case wherein it questioned Singh’s interest in paying Rs 5 lakh to a witness. “Why such a huge payment was made to the said witness, I.e. a cyber expert, what was the interest of the CP, is a grey area, for which there are no answers,” the HC had noted while dismissing Pradeep Sharma’s plea.
The bench headed by Justice Gadkari said that the earlier bench had considered this bail rejection order while dismissing Sharma’s petition.