The CBI has questioned former Mumbai Police commissioners Sanjay Pandey and Param Bir Singh in connection with Rs 100 crore extortion allegations against former minister Anil Deshmukh, officials said on Monday. Pandey, who retired on June 30, is facing two CBI FIRs -- illegal interception of phones of NSE employees by iSec Services Private Ltd, a company founded by him, and violation of SEBI guidelines in conducting NSE's system audit.
The agency had called him for questioning in connection with allegations of corruption against former Maharashtra home minister Deshmukh, in judicial custody for allegedly demanding Rs 100 crore every month from bars and restaurants in Mumbai, the officials said. The agency has booked Deshmukh and unidentified others under IPC sections related to criminal conspiracy and section of Prevention of Corruption Act for "attempt to obtain undue advantage for improper and dishonest performace of public duty".
In his letter to former chief minister Uddhav Thackeray, after he was removed from the Mumbai Police commissioner's post, Singh had alleged that Deshmukh asked Mumbai cop Sachin Waze to allegedly extort over Rs 100 crore a month from Mumbai's bars and restaurants, the officials said.
Waze who was also arrested in the case has been given a pardon by the court after turning approver in the case, they said. "The Preliminary Enquiry prima facie revealed that a cognizable offence is made out in the matter, wherein the then Home minister of Maharashtra, shri Anil Deshmukh and unknown others have attempted to obtain undue advantage for improper and dishonest performance of their public duty," the CBI FIR has alleged.
According to the CBI manual, a preliminary enquiry is initiated to assess if there is enough prima facie material in the allegations to proceed with a regular case for a full fledged probe, officials said. The CBI enquiry found that Waze, assistant police inspector, Mumbai Police, who was arrested later by NIA, had been reinstated into the police force after being out of police service for more than 15 years.
Waze was entrusted with most sensational and important cases of Mumbai City Police and Deshmukh, then home minister, was in knowledge of the said fact, the FIR alleged. The FIR also alleged that Deshmukh "and others" exercised undue influence over the transfer and posting of officials, thereby exercising undue influence over the performance of official duties by the officials.
(With PTI Inputs)