28 Mar 2021: Retired HC judge to probe allegations against me: Anil Deshmukh
Maharashtra Home Minister Anil Deshmukh on Sunday said that an inquiry would be conducted into the corruption allegations against him.
The allegations, leveled against him by former Mumbai Police chief Param Bir Singh, will be probed by a retired High Court judge, Deshmukh said, adding that this would allow the facts to come to the fore.
Here are more details.
Details: Deshmukh said CM ordered probe after his request
Speaking to reporters at the Nagpur airport, Deshmukh said that, during a recent Cabinet meeting, he had requested Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray for a probe into the allegations against him.
Deshmukh reached Nagpur on Sunday to take stock of the COVID-19 situation in the region.
He said the CM ordered a probe to be conducted by a retired HC judge to ascertain the truth.
Allegations: What are the allegations against Deshmukh?
Singh had accused Deshmukh of running an extortion racket with police officers, wherein cops were allegedly assigned a monthly target of Rs. 100 crore and asked to collect money from restaurants, pubs, bars, and hookah parlors.
Singh had also accused Deshmukh of interfering in police cases, alleging that the Home Minister would instruct cops on how to handle probes, bypassing the former top cop.
Context: Singh raised allegations after transfer to low-key post
Singh had raised the allegations mere days after he was transferred as Mumbai Police chief to a low-key post in the Home Guard.
The Maharashtra Home Ministry had ordered the transfer citing "unforgivable" lapses in the probe into the high-profile Mukesh Ambani bomb threat case.
After the transfer, Singh had alleged that he was being "scapegoated," pointing fingers at Deshmukh.
Ambani case: What is the Mukesh Ambani bomb threat case?
Singh was transferred as the Maharashtra government faced criticism for the Ambani bomb threat case.
On February 25, the police found an abandoned Mahindra Scorpio parked near Ambani's 27-story home, Antilia, with 20 gelatin sticks and a threatening letter.
Mansukh Hiren, who had reported the vehicle missing on February 18, was found dead.
Mumbai cop Sachin Waze has been arrested in the case.
Other developments: Opposition seeks President's rule in Maharashtra
The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP)-led Opposition has sought Deshmukh's removal.
Union Minister and RPI(A) President Ramdas Athawale has also backed calls urging President Ram Nath Kovind to impose President's rule in Maharashtra.
Deshmukh said he will seek a defamation lawsuit against Singh. Deshmukh's Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) said the Minister was quarantined when he is alleged to have plotted the extortion racket.