CBI registers FIR against ex-Maharashtra HM Anil Deshmukh, raids his houses

The Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) on Saturday registered an FIR against former Maharashtra Home Minister Anil Deshmukh and others in connection with the corruption allegations made by former Mumbai Police Commissioner Param Bir Singh.

The FIR was lodged after the Bombay High Court on April 5 took into consideration a PIL and ordered the CBI to conduct a preliminary enquiry and submit a report within 15 days. The HC had granted the liberty to the CBI director to take further action based on the preliminary enquiry.

The CBI searched Deshmukh’s premises in Mumbai and Nagpur. In Mumbai, CBI teams conducted simultaneous searches at two properties linked to Deshmukh. Searches were conducted at Dnyaneshwari bungalow in Malabar Hill, which was allotted to Deshmukh, when he was a minister. Another team carried out searches at his flat in Sukhada Apartment on Sir Pochkhanwala Road in Worli. In Nagpur, a CBI team had arrived from Delhi on Friday night and carried out a search at Deshmukh’s house at GPO Square in Civil Lines areas in Nagpur.

According to the FIR, a copy of which is with FPJ, a Preliminary Enquiry (PE) was initiated against Deshmukh on April 6. "PE prima facie has revealed that a cognisable offence is made out in the matter where Anil Deshmukh and unknown others have attempted to obtain undue advantage of improper and dishonest performance of their public duty,” read the FIR.

The enquiry had revealed that officer Sachin Vaze had been reinstated into the police force after being out of the police service for more than 15 years. The enquiry further revealed that Vaze was entrusted with most sensational and important cases of Mumbai City Police and Deshmukh knew the said fact, read the FIR. “The petition of Param Bir Singh finds mention that Deshmukh and others exercised undue influence over the transfer and postings of officials and thereby exercising the undue influence over the performance of official duties by the officials," FIR states.

CBI officers wearing PPE kits and masks conducted the search. They carried a printer and a laptop to make spot panchnama. CBI sources claimed that they have collected some incriminating documents from the raids in Mumbai.

Singh in a letter written to Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray had claimed that Vaze was called by Deshmukh, to his official residence Dyaneshwar several times in the last few months and repeatedly instructed to assist in collection of funds for the Home Minister.

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