Supreme Court Refuses To Interfere With Pleas On Maharashtra Ex-Minister’s Bail

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The Supreme Court today refused to interfere with the Bombay High Court order on grant of bail to former Maharashtra home minister Anil Deshmukh in a money laundering case.
A bench of Justices DY Chandrachud and Hima Kohli said the observations made by the high court in its order will not affect the trial in the case and dismissed the appeal filed by the Enforcement Directorate.

On October 4, the high court had granted bail to the former minister in the case observing two components of credits” in the bank account of his family trust were not the proceeds of crime.

The HC, however, had stayed the implementation of its order till October 13 after the ED submitted it will challenge the order in the Supreme Court.

Two components of credits (Rs 10.42 crore and ₹ 1.12 crore) in the account of a trust controlled by the Deshmukh family, flagged by the ED, were “not proceeds of crime,” a single-judge bench of the high court had said in the order.

The high court also said the statements given by former Mumbai Police commissioner Param Bir Singh and dismissed officer Sachin Waze alleging that Deshmukh had taken money from police officers for favourable postings were “prima facie hearsay”.

The Nationalist Congress Party leader, arrested on November 2, 2021, is also facing a corruption case registered by the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI).

Mr Deshmukh, who was a minister in the previous MVA government, is lodged in Arthur Road jail in Mumbai.

The ED claimed Deshmukh had misused his official position and collected ₹ 4.70 crore from various bars and restaurants in Mumbai.

The money was channelled to Nagpur-based Shri Sai Shikshan Sansthan, an educational trust controlled by the Mr Deshmukh family, it alleged. Param Bir Singh had alleged in March 2021 that Mr Deshmukh, then the home minister, had given a target to police officers to collect ₹ 100 crore per month from restaurants and bars in Mumbai.

The then assistant police inspector Waze, arrested in the ‘Antilia’ bomb scare case in March last too had levelled similar allegations.

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