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Maharashtra govt warrants ACB for open inquiry into corruption charges against Param Bir Singh

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Mumbai: The Maharashtra government has given its permission to the Anti-Corruption Bureau (ACB) to conduct an open inquiry into the allegations of corruption against former Mumbai Police Commissioner Param Bir Singh made by another police officer, an official of the agency said on Thursday.

The ACB had sought permission to initiate open inquiry against Singh into the charges levelled by police inspector Anup Dange and the government gave its nod on Wednesday, he said.

Dange was suspended last year and reinstated into the police service earlier this year.

The ACB official said that the probe is based on the complaint by Dange, who alleged that he was approached by a man claiming to be Param Bir Singh’s relative and demanded a bribe of Rs 2 crore to reinstate him into the force.

Dange was earlier attached to Gamdevi police station and is now attached to Mumbai police’s south control room. He had written a letter to Maharashtra Additional Chief Secretary (Home) in February this year, in which he had levelled allegations against Singh.

Dange alleged that Singh had tried to shield some people having underworld links from the law when he was the DG of the ACB.

In his letter to the state government, Dange had said that in November 2019, when he went to shut down a pub in south Mumbai, the owner claimed to know Singh well. Dange, however, went on to file a complaint after a scuffle broke out outside the pub while the police were taking action against the pub.

Dange alleged that after Singh became Mumbai police commissioner, he suspended him. He claimed that a person claiming to be Singh’s relative approached him and demanded a bribe of Rs 2 crore to reinstate him.

The ACB, which was conducting two discreet inquiries against Singh based on the complaints by Dange and another inspector, had sought permission from the home department to proceed with an open inquiry (on Dange’s complaint), he said.

Singh had been transferred from the post of Mumbai police chief in March this year over the handling of the Mukesh Ambhani security scare case. A few days after that, Singh had written a letter to Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray alleging that Anil Deshmukh, who was the home minister at that time, had asked police officer Sachin Waze to collect Rs 100 crore every month from bars and restaurants.

Deshmukh stepped down as a minister in April after the Bombay High Court ordered a CBI inquiry into the allegations made against him by Singh.

Also read: Time to depoliticise Indian police. It can be Modi’s Sudarshan Chakra


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