Allegations against Deshmukh: CBI questions Mumbai bar owner

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Mumbai, Apr 9 (PTI) The CBI on Friday recorded the statement an owner of a city-based bar in connection with the allegations of corruption levelled by former Mumbai police commissioner Param Bir Singh against former Maharashtra Home Minister Anil Deshmukh, an official said.

'A team of the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI), which is conducting a premilinary inquiry into the allegations against Deshmukh, recorded the statement of bar owner Mahesh Shetty,' the official said.

According to sources, Shetty is the owner of Love Bird orchestra bar and he had allegedly met suspended assistant police inspector Sachin Waze on March 3 this year.

During the questioning, the CBI team asked Shetty the purpose of the meeting, the sources added.

In 2015, Shetty had been arrested in connection with the murder of a journalist of a weekly in Bhayandar, the said.

On Friday morning, the CBI team recorded the statement of Waze for the third consecutive day in connection with the case, the official said.

Param Bir Singh, who was under flak over the handling of the recovery of an explosives-laden SUV near industrialist Mukesh Ambani's residence, was transferred from the post of Mumbai police commissioner on March 17. Three days later, he wrote a letter to Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray, in which he alleged that Anil Deshmukh had asked Waze to collect Rs 100 crore per month from bars and restaurants.

The Bombay High Court had on Monday directed the CBI to conduct a preliminary inquiry into the allegations against Deshmukh. Soon after the order, Deshmukh, a senior NCP leader, resigned as home minister.

Waze is currently in the custody of the National Investigation Agency (NIA) in connection with the probe into the explosives-laden SUV. Waze is also under scanner for the alleged murder of Thane-based businessman Mansukh Hiran, who was in possession of that SUV. PTI DC NP NP