Seven months after it lodged an FIR against IPS officer Rashmi Shukla, accusing her of illegally tapping phones of some leading political leaders in Maharashtra, the Pune City Police has filed a closure report (C-Summary) in the matter against its former Commissioner.
Shukla, who headed Pune City Police between March 2016 and July 2018 when the BJP-led government was in power in the state, is currently on Central deputation with the CRPF.
Police sources said Friday that a C-Summary report has been submitted in the case against Shukla. A C-Summary report is filed in a case where the FIR is found to be based on a mistake of fact.
Last year, Maharashtra Congress president Nana Patole alleged in the Assembly that his phone was tapped during 2016-2017 (when he was a BJP MP). He claimed that phones of Union Minister Raosaheb Danve’s personal assistant, then BJP MP Sanjay Kakade and other elected representatives were also tapped.
NCP MLA Dilip Walse Patil, who was the Home Minister in the MVA government, had announced that the government would probe Patole’s allegations.
A three-member committee, headed by then DGP Sanjay Pandey, was formed to conduct an inquiry into the matter. The other members of the committee were the Commissioner of the State Intelligence Department (SID) and Additional Commissioner of the Special Branch.
An FIR was lodged against Shukla at the Bundgarden police station in Pune on February 25 this year.
Assistant Police Inspector Vaishali Chandgude lodged the FIR which alleged that despite being aware of the legal process for phone tapping, the then Pune City Police Commissioner, Shukla, did not follow rules and carried out phone tapping with “bad political motives”.
The Pune City Police issued a press release which stated: “The three member committee conducted an inquiry to know whether illegal phone tapping of elected representatives was done with wrong political motives between 2015 and 2019. The inquiry report submitted by the committee regarding investigation of those found involved in the illegal phone tapping has been accepted by the state government. The committee has stated in its report that Rashmi Shukla did illegal phone tapping at the time when she was the commissioner of Pune city police. So an offence has been lodged…”
The MVA coalition alleged that Shukla tapped phones without permission.
Earlier this year, an FIR was registered against Shukla at the Colaba police station in Mumbai, alleging that she had put the phone numbers of NCP leader Eknath Khadse and Shiv Sena leader Sanjay Raut under surveillance when she was heading the SID.
In April, the Colaba police filed a chargesheet in the matter. A proposal to get sanction for prosecution is pending with the state government.
Shukla had moved the Bombay High Court, seeking quashing of the FIRs in Pune and Mumbai.
– With ENS, Mumbai