‘Injustice’: Sharad Pawar defends Anil Deshmukh in money laundering case

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Image Source : PTI (FILE)

NCP chief Sharad Pawar

Highlights

  • Param Bir Singh had in February levelled corruption charges against Anil Deshmukh
  • NCP leader Anil Deshmukh had to resign as Maharashtra’s Home Minister following the graft charges
  • Anil Deshmukh is currently in jail after being arrested by ED on November 1

NCP chief Sharad Pawar has defended party colleague and former Maharashtra minister Anil Deshmukh who is embroiled in a multi-crore money laundering case. Pawar said that injustice is being done to Deshmukh as he referred to former Mumbai police commissioner Param Bir Singh being declared ‘proclaimed offender’ by a court. Pawar said that this was a vindication of NCP’s stance on Deshmukh.

Pawar said that when Param Bir Singh after making allegations against Deshmukh is not coming forward to prove them, then “why is the former minister in jail”.

“Former Mumbai CP (Param Bir Singh), after making corruption allegations against him (former Home Minister Anil Deshmukh) has gone absconding & not coming forward to prove them. You (BJP) put Anil Deshmukh in jail, you’ll pay the price for whatever you did to him,” he told reporters in Nagpur yesterday.

“It is kind of injustice to Anil Deshmukh,” Pawar added.

Deshmukh, 71, is currently in jail under judicial custody after being arrested by the Enforcement Directorate (ED) in a money laundering case. The NCP leader was arrested by the ED on November 1 after questioning in the case, under provisions of the Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA).

The ED had initiated a probe against Deshmukh and others after the CBI filed its FIR against the NCP leader on April 21 this year on charges of corruption and misuse of official position. The money laundering case against Deshmukh and others was made out after the CBI booked him in a corruption case related to allegations of at least Rs 100 crore bribery made by Param Bir Singh.

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

Deshmukh had refuted these allegations earlier and said the agency’s whole case was based on malicious statements made by Waze.

The ED had earlier also arrested his two aides- Sanjeev Palande (additional collector rank official who was working as Deshmukh’s private secretary) and Kundan Shinde (Deshmukh’s personal assistant) – in connection with the case. They are currently in judicial custody. The agency had also submitted its prosecution complaint (equivalent to a charge sheet) against the duo before a special court.

READ MORE: Money laundering case: Anil Deshmukh sent to 14-day judicial custody by special court

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