Leaked CBI Report Giving Clean Chit to Anil Deshmukh Is Genuine: NCP

The Central agency has said the report was leaked after a bribe was paid and has arrested two persons, including Deshmukh's lawyer.

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New Delhi: The Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) leader and Maharashtra minority affairs minister Nawab Malik on Thursday claimed that a leaked Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) report which purportedly gave a ‘clean chit’ to former Maharashtra home minister Anil Deshmukh in a corruption case was genuine.

The Central agency said that the report was leaked after a bribe was paid and it has registered a criminal case in this regard.

Speaking to reporters, Malik asked why the CBI has not said if the report is fake or genuine, he said.

“To save its face, it is saying that the report had been managed,” Malik alleged. “If the report is presented in court, Anil Deshmukh will get a reprieve. Whatever is happening is all politically motivated,” he added.

The CBI on Thursday arrested Deshmukh’s lawyer Anand Daga for allegedly trying to subvert a Bombay high court-directed preliminary enquiry against the former Maharashtra minister.

It has also arrested CBI sub-inspector Abhishek Tiwari for allegedly receiving a bribe from Daga. A report of the preliminary enquiry purportedly giving clean chit to Deshmukh was leaked on Saturday night. The CBI started a probe into the leak and claimed that the findings of the enquiry had been influenced.

The Bombay high court had directed the agency to start a preliminary inquiry while hearing a public interest litigation on allegations of corruption levelled by former Mumbai police commissioner Param Bir Singh against Deshmukh.

Deshmukh moves HC against summons

Meanwhile, Deshmukh on Thursday moved the Bombay high court, seeking the Enforcement Directorate (ED)’s summons issued to him in connection with a money laundering case registered against him to be quashed. He also sought the probe to be handed over to an SIT of ED officers outside Mumbai.

Deshmukh’s application came up for hearing before a single bench of Justice Revati Mohite Dere. However, Justice Dere recused herself from hearing the application without assigning any reason and said, “Not before me.”

The application will now be heard by another bench.

The ED had initiated a probe against Deshmukh and his associates after the CBI lodged an FIR against him on April 21 this year on charges of corruption and misuse of official position.

The ED’s case is that while serving as the state home minister, Deshmukh allegedly misused his position and through dismissed police officer Sachin Waze collected Rs 4.70 crore from various bars and restaurants in Mumbai.

The money was allegedly laundered to the Nagpur-based Shri Sai Shikshan Sansthan, an educational trust controlled by Deshmukh’s family.

The ED has till now issued five summons to Deshmukh, asking him to appear before it for questioning. However, Deshmukh skipped all the five summons, saying he would be seeking appropriate remedies available under law.

Deshmukh last month approached the Supreme Court against the summons and sought protection from arrest. The apex court had, however, refused to grant any relief and said Deshmukh had alternate remedies.

The NCP leader then approached the HC, challenging the summons.

The ED has so far arrested two persons – Sanjeev Palande (an additional collector-rank official who was working as Deshmukh’s private secretary) and Kundan Shinde (Deshmukh’s personal assistant) – in the case.

The CBI had lodged the FIR against Deshmukh after it conducted a preliminary enquiry against him following an order from the HC on April 5. Deshmukh resigned as the home minister on the same day but has denied any wrongdoing.

(With PTI inputs)