Updated: December 30, 2021 12:41:43 am
THE ENFORCEMENT Directorate (ED) on Wednesday submitted a supplementary chargesheet against former Maharashtra Home Minister Anil Deshmukh in the money-laundering case case filed in connection with alleged collection of bribe from bar owners in Mumbai.
The agency has also named Deshmukh’s sons, Hrishikesh and Salil, in the prosecution complaint. The previous chargesheet filed by the ED in September named 14 accused, including dismissed cop Sachin Waze.
The chargesheet, running into over 7,000-pages, details the role of Deshmukh with the ED claiming that he was the primary beneficiary of the money laundering of a sum of Rs 4.7 crore allegedly collected between December 2020-March 2021 by Waze.
The ED, during its probe, had claimed that Deshmukh’s family was indirectly controlling or managing the activities of 27 companies used to launder money and that the bribe money was shown as donations made to Deshmukh’s trust, Sai Shikshan Sanstha by a few Delhi-based firms. The ED alleged that Deshmukh had claimed that the money was loans and CSR (Corporate Social Responsibility) fund received from the companies.
The chargesheet is likely to have statements of former chief secretary of the state Sitaram Kunte, who was recently summoned by the ED.
Arrested on November 2, Deshmukh remains in custody and is yet to file for bail. Two of his staffers, Sanjeev Palande and Kundan Shinde, also remain in custody after a special court denied them bail earlier this month. They were arrested in June.
The anticipatory bail plea of Deshmukh’s son Hrishikesh is pending hearing.
The ED’s case against Deshmukh is based on an FIR filed by the CBI on April 21 following a preliminary enquiry into allegations of corruption and bribery levelled against him in a letter sent by then Mumbai police chief Param Bir Singh to Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray. The Bombay High Court directed for the enquiry after which Deshmukh resigned from his post as Home Minister on April 5.
Deshmukh has been denying the allegations claiming that those who have levelled the charges are themselves embroiled in multiple criminal offences and, therefore, could not be relied on.