There was further relief for Param Bir Singh, Mumbai’s former Commissioner of Police, as the Supreme Court ordered today that while the investigation against him will continue no chargesheet can be filed against the former top cop and he cannot be arrested in criminal cases filed against him, until further orders.
The top court observed that the probe against Mr Singh, suspended from the Mumbai Police over allegations of misconduct, be carried out by any other agency and not the state police, however it added that the Maharashtra police can continue its probe in the FIR against him for now.
The Central Bureau of Investigation, or the CBI, says it is ready to take up the case. “If case is entrusted to us we are ready,” Solicitor General Tushar Mehta, who appeared for the CBI, told the top court.
The court, in turn, has asked the CBI to file an affidavit in a week to state on record if it is ready to investigate the matter.
The Maharashtra government has told the Supreme Court that Mr Singh cannot be considered as a “whistleblower” under the law as he chose to speak out against alleged corruption involving former home minister Anil Deshmukh only after his transfer.
After he was shunted out as Mumbai Police commissioner in March 2021 in the aftermath of the Antilia bomb scare case, Mr Singh, in a letter to Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray, levelled corruption allegations against Mr Deshmukh.
The state government has accorded approval to initiate the disciplinary proceedings against Mr Singh under the All India Services (Discipline and Appeal) Rules , 1969.
The matter involving Mr Singh and former state home minister Anil Deshmukh, facing probe over corruption allegations levelled by Singh, has become “curiouser and curiouser”, the top court had said, issuing notices to the Maharashtra government, its DGP Sanjay Pande and the CBI on the plea of the former top cop of Mumbai.
Param Bir Singh’s lawyer had said Mr Singh needed protection as he had shown the courage to come to this court and raise the issue of corruption against the former state home minister.
Mr Singh’s lawyer had said as many as six FIRs have been lodged against the former top cop for the alleged offences pertaining to years like 2015 and 2016 and submitted as to how a police officer will act if they are hounded at the behest of state for the actions done as police officers on the complaints of bookies and extortionists.
The next hearing has been scheduled for January 11.