After HC order on CBI probe, Fadnavis says Deshmukh must quit

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Mumbai, Apr 5 (PTI) Maharashtra BJP leader Devendra Fadnavis on Monday demanded the resignation of state home minister Anil Deshmukh after the Bombay High Court directed the CBI to conduct a preliminary inquiry within 15 days into allegations of corruption and misconduct made against the latter by former Mumbai police chief Param Bir Singh.

On March 25, Singh filed a criminal public interest litigation seeking a CBI probe against Deshmukh, who he claimed asked police officers, including arrested cop Sachin Waze, to collect Rs 100 crore from bars and restaurants.

Speaking to reporters, Fadnavis said, 'Truth will come out in the preliminary inquiry. It is improper for Deshmukh to continue as minister after the HC order. He should resign on moral grounds, face the probe and come back to the ministry if he is found to be innocent.' He said Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray must ask Deshmukh to resign if the NCP leader refuses to quit.

Fadnavis said the Thackeray government had decided not to allow CBI to take up cases in Maharashtra but the Bombay HC and Supreme Court had the power to direct such investigations.

The CBI probe will reveal how an extortion racket was carried out with blessings of the government and ministers, he said, adding that all efforts were made to show IPS offices like Singh and Rashmi Shukla, a former SID chief at the centre of a phone tapping controversy, in a bad light. PTI MR BNM BNM