Thane Police Crime Branch Wednesday arrested another top civic official in connection with the collapse of a seven-storey building in Mumbra earlier this month.
Thane deputy municipal commissioner Shrikant Sarmokaddams arrest has brought the number of persons hauled up in the case to 20. Nine of these are retired government officials.
Addl CP (Crime) Milind Bharambe said,Sarmokaddams name figures in the records of payments made to civic officials recovered from the residences of builders Jameel Qureshi and Salim Sheikh. His name also came up during interrogation of the accused.
Sarmokaddam,too,is accused of taking money to turn a blind eye to the illegal building,police said.
Police said Sarmokaddam had been identified as an accused early on in the case. However,there was a death in Sarmokaddams family and police were waiting for him to perform the last rites. Once that was over,he was summoned for questioning and later placed under arrest. He will be produced in court Thursday,police said.
The other government servants arrested in the case are deputy municipal commissioner Deepak Chavan,assistant municipal commissioner Babasaheb Andhale,assistant municipal commissioner Kisan Thorbole,TMC senior clerk Kisan Madke,NCP corporator Hira Patil,head constable Jehangir Sayyed,Diaghar police station,Subhash Rawal,executive engineer,encroachment,Mumbra ward,and Ramesh Inamdar,deputy engineer,encroachment,Mumbra.
The civilians arrested in the case include builders Qureshi,Ansari,their four partners and three persons who acted as agents and middlemen. Vishnu Ghumre,a photographer,was arrested for allegedly extorting money from builders as well as taking a commission from civic officials.