The Supreme Court refused to provide interim protection from arrest to former Maharashtra Home Minister Anil Deshmukh in the alleged money laundering case against him.
The three-judge bench of Justices A.M. Khanwilkar, Krishna Murari and V. Ramasubramanian said it is open to Deshmukh to pursue appropriate remedies under law. Deshmukh had moved the Apex Court seeking protection from any coercive action by the Enforcement Directorate in a money laundering case.
On Monday, the Supreme Court said legal remedies can be taken only by staying within the legal provisions. Deshmukh should approach the local court of Mumbai for anticipatory bail and the Supreme Court cannot help them in this, the bench said.
Anil Deshmukh was summoned three times by the ED for questioning but he did not appear. Apart from Deshmukh, his son and wife were also summoned but they also refused to appear in the ED office for questioning. For this, he kept citing accusations of illness, Covid, and his age.
Meanwhile, the ED has seized assets worth Rs 4.20 crore by raiding several locations. The ED claimed Deshmukh got Rs 4.70 crore recovered from bar owners via police officer Sachin Waze and Deshmukh invested this amount in his business.
Former Mumbai Police commissioner Param Bir Singh had accused Deshmukh of using the police officers of Mumbai to extort Rs 100 crore from hotel and restaurant owners while serving as Home Minister. After this, the CBI had registered a corruption case against him.
Earlier, the Maharashtra government had moved the Bombay High Court in the Anil Deshmukh case. CBI had registered a case against Anil Deshmukh. The state government had demanded that two paragraphs related to this case be canceled. But the petition was turned down by the High Court. And now in the ED case, the Supreme Court has also given a blow to Deshmukh.
The CBI FIR says Deshmukh used to unnecessarily interfere in the reinstatement of suspended police officer Sachin Waze in the police team and transfer posting of police officers while he was the Home Minister. The state government had demanded that these two issues be dropped from the CBI FIR. Both these issues are related to the ministry and administrative work. CBI is making it the subject of investigation without any reason. The state government had said in its petition that the CBI has registered a case against Deshmukh only to destabilize the Maha Vikas Aghadi government.