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Supreme Court transfers Mumbai top cop Param Bir Singh’s case to CBI

By wasmulhaq 
Updated Date

The Supreme Court on Thursday decided to transfer the extortion, corruption, and misbehaviour cases against the former Mumbai police commissioner, Param Bir Singh, to the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI). Allegations like the Mansukh Hiren murder case and the Antilia bomb scare are against him as well.

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 “We are not saying Param Bir Singh is a whistle blower or that anyone involved is innocent. The disturbing scenario presented before this court deserves an inquiry, “the top court said, declining to interfere with the former Mumbai top cop’s suspension by the state government.

A gloomy picture

A very murky affair is going on in the middle of the echelons of power on who should investigate the matter, a bench of Justices S K Kaul and M M Sundresh said.

The apex court said a thorough investigation is required to restore public faith in the state police.

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The bench said: “We are unable to accept the contention that an FIR is registered by those who had complaints against the petitioner. We are of the view that the state itself should have allowed the CBI to carry out the investigation.

“We are of the prima facie view that there is some concerted effort which needs an investigation by the CBI. What is the truth? Who is at fault? How does such a scenario come to prevail? This is something which investigation must get into. The CBI must hold an impartial inquiry into all these aspects.

The top court said it was not commenting on the merits of the allegations as it does not want the investigation to be influenced in any manner.

“We do not want the investigation to be influenced by the observations of this court. The high court has treated this as a service dispute, which it is not, and thus we set aside the HC verdict. We allow the appeal and direct the probe into five FIRs to be transferred to the CBI with all records.

The bench said that “such a transfer has to be completed within one week and all officials should extend full cooperation to the CBI to try to arrive at the truth.”

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It’s not a reflection of the Maharashtra police

“This is not a reflection on the Maharashtra police, which is respected, but a troubling scenario among the higher echelons. We cannot accept the argument that when a person in power loses power, then people below him come out and file FIRs. “We do believe there is some inter-concerted effort being made which requires investigation by an agency outside the state police,” the top court said, handing over the reins of the probe to the central investigative agency.

“We are of the opinion that the state itself should have offered for an investigation to be carried out. The court added that “exigencies and the advancement of fair play require investigation to be transferred to the CBI.”

Darius Khambata, appearing for the Maharashtra government, had argued that Maharashtra does not want the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) to probe the case against former Mumbai top cop Parambir Singh.

“No facts presented to the court could prove that the police did not conduct an adequate investigation; thus far, only baseless allegations have been made,” the Maharashtra government told the Supreme Court.

“That’s not correct,” the Supreme Court said, adding, “Sometimes states themselves send matters to the CBI.” If it was demoralizing, then the CBI would not have any cases. It is linked to the same question of demands being made. “

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Singh shunted out in 2021                

 Singh was shunted out as the Mumbai Police Commissioner in March 2021 after an explosive-laden SUV was found outside the south Mumbai residence of Mukesh Ambani. Following his ouster, Param Bir Singh, in a letter to Maharashtra Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray, accused then state Home Minister Anil Deshmukh of extortion and corruption.

Singh’s lawyer demands protection

Param Bir Singh’s lawyer had sought protection for the former Mumbai top cop, saying that he had shown the courage to come to court and raise the issue of corruption against the former state minister. Singh has also petitioned the Supreme Court to hand over all investigations against him to the CBI, a central agency.

Param Bir Singh was born in Chandigarh and did his MA in Sociology from Punjab University. He cracked the civil services examination in 1988 and got into the Indian Police Service (IPS).

Wasim

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