The National Investigation Agency (NIA) told a special NIA court on Wednesday that Mansukh Hiran was a co-conspirator in the (Antilia) explosives case and had been eliminated.
Earlier on Wednesday, the CBI had approached the court and sought permission to question Vaze in connection with the former Commissioner of Police Param Bir Singh’s allegations against the then home minister Anil Deshmukh. A day earlier, the CBI had registered a preliminary inquiry on the allegations in the former CP’s PIL seeking a CBI probe on his allegations against Deshmukh. The court allowed this plea of the agency. Vaze will be questioned by the CBI while in NIA custody.
Seeking four days additional custody of Vaze in the Antilia explosives and Mansukh Hiran murder case, Additional Solicitor General Anil Singh told the court that Vaze and others hatched the conspiracy to eliminate Hiran on 2 March and 3 March and it needs to probe the motive behind the crime.
The agency also told the court that there was an amount of Rs. 1.5 crore in an Axis bank account standing in the name of a company floated by Vaze. Probe revealed that he had given amounts of Rs. 36 lakhs and Rs. 40 lakhs to his accomplice and that it wanted to find out if he was extorting for himself or for someone else. The agency argued that how an API rank officer has such a huge amount in his account. It further informed the court that he has purchased eight high-end vehicles.
Singh further told the court that the agency needs to find if the amounts were used for sourcing the gelatin sticks and thereby had a direct connection with them. It further told the court that Vaze is a policeman well aware of his legal rights and using it to dodge the probe.
Vaze’s advocate Aabad Ponda did not oppose the custody, but brought to the attention of the court that Vaze had been handcuffed all through when taken to CSMT for a recreation of events as part of the probe. “You cannot handcuff a citizen, especially a senior police officer. He may be accused of a serious offence but you cannot do this,” Ponda told the court.
On an application by Vaze to get his angiography test done in view of his experiencing cardiac issue recently while in custody, the court directed the NIA to provide him necessary medical aid and get his medical status report on 9 April, till when it remanded him in NIA custody.