DCP, ACP contradict Param Bir Singh’s allegations about Anil Deshmukh
Amid leaks of various letters and complaints surrounding controversial cop Sachin Vaze, who has been arrested by the National Investigation Agency (NIA) in the bomb scare case outside billionaire Mukesh Ambani’s house Antilia, statements of two Mumbai Police officers, who have been named as key witnesses by former Mumbai Police commissioner Param Bir Singh in his letter while making allegations against former home minister Anil Deshmukh about demanding a monthly ₹100 crore collection, got leaked on Wednesday. In the statements, the two officers have contradicted Singh’s version. A crime branch officer has confirmed the genuineness of the statements.
Statements of deputy commissioner of police (establishments) Dr Raju Bhujbal and assistant commissioner of police (social service) Sanjay Patil which were recorded as suo motu measure by joint commissioner of police Milind Bharambhe as head of the crime branch immediately after Singh’s letter to CM mentioned the two officers from his department.
Singh had alleged that Deshmukh had asked Vaze to collect extortion money and had also attached a chat with Patil to corroborate the same. However, Patil in his statement to the joint commissioner (crime) stated that he met Deshmukh on March 1 to brief him about some bars and hookah parlours in Thane. On the same day Vaze met Patil and told him that the home minister had asked him if “ ₹3 lakh were being collected from the 1,750 bars and restaurants in Mumbai”, according to Patil’s statement. It was a query and not a demand, Patil stressed.
It was Vaze who informed Patil and Bhujbal about his alleged discussion with Deshmukh over collection from 1,750 bars and restaurants. The same was never discussed with Patil and Bhujbal independently by Deshmukh. Patil also stated that he doesn’t know if Vaze met the home minister in person.
Singh had also stated that on March 4 Patil and Bhujbal had visited Deshmukh’s official residence Dyaneshwar, but in their statements the two maintained that the three never met.
“On March 4, Deshmukh’s secretary Palande was seen asking Bhujbal if such (huge) amount is collected from city’s establishments? To which we (Patil and Bhujbal) responded him in negative,” Patil stated in the statement.
Patil further added that he never met the home minister before or after March 1.
Singh, in his letter, had cited content of chats with Patil about discussion on Deshmukh demanding money. However, Patil stated that these discussions were pertaining to Vaze informing them about Deshmukh allegedly asking him about daily collection of money from establishments. The chats were not about Deshmukh directly asking Patil for collecting money, the officer said.
After recording statements of the two officers, Bharambhe informed the home department about it. A crime branch officer said it was important to record the statements of the two immediately, before they could come under pressure by anyone.
The Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI), which is carrying out the preliminary probe on the orders of the Bombay high court in Singh’s allegations on Deshmukh, would also be independently recording statements of Bhujbal and Patil.
Bhujbal and Patil did not respond to calls.