The Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) has taken former Home Minister of Maharashtra Anil Deshmukh in their custody from Arthur Road Jail where he was lodged. The central agency had lodged a case of extortion against him. He will be produced before a CBI court shortly.
On 1 April, a special Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA) court had allowed the CBI to take custody of Deshmukh, his personal secretary Vijay PalandeVaz and personal assistant Kundan Shinde, all arrested by the Enforcement Directorate (ED) in the money laundering case, from Arthur Road jail where they were lodged.
The CBI then took custody of Palande and Shinde but could not take in Deshmukh as he was admitted to Sir JJ Group of Hospitals on 2 April after he allegedly had a fall in the jail on 30 March, leading to a shoulder dislocation.
The state-run hospital discharged Deshmukh in the afternoon yesterday and sent him back to jail.
CBI registered the corruption case against the Nationalist Congress Party leader on 21 April 2021 based on allegations of corruption levelled by former Mumbai police commissioner Param Bir Singh.
In a letter to Maharashtra chief minister Uddhav Thackeray on 20 March 2021, the former police commissioner of Mumbai alleged that Deshmukh instructed certain Mumbai police officers, including assistant inspector Sachin Vaze, to collect Rs 100 crore every month from Mumbai’s restaurants and bars.
Subsequently, the ED also registered a money laundering case against Deshmukh, son Hrishikesh and others. On Deshmukh’s instructions, Vaze allegedly called a meeting of Mumbai bar owners, and collected Rs 4.7 crore from them between December 2020 and February 2021 to ‘avoid’ police interference.
In his statement to the ED, Vaze revealed that he handed over the “extorted money” in two instalments to Kundan Shinde.
On 26 June 2021, the ED arrested Shinde and Deshmukh’s personal secretary Sanjeev Palande, and on 23 August, filed a charge sheet against them. Vaze is also an accused in the charge sheet.