HOME MINISTER Anil Deshmukh Thursday blamed the previous Devendra Fadnavis government for the controversy involving the allotment of digitisation work of Mumbai Police’s official records to a private company owned by the son and wife of city commissioner Sanjay Barve.
Deshmukh told mediapersons that the previous BJP government was aware that the project was being awarded to Crispq Information Technologies Private Limited, which is owned by Barve’s son Sumukh and wife Sharmila, on a pro-bono basis.
“Barve had the necessary permission from the BJP government to go ahead with the contract,” he said, adding that his ministry has sought a few more documents regarding the case.
“I have got details of the contract awarded to Barve’s family. A letter dated October 7, 2019 clearly specifies that the government gave him the permission,” he said.
Later, speaking to The Indian Express, Deshmukh said, “Barve has the necessary permission from the state. We have the letter issued on October 7, last year. You should ask the previous government why it gave permission to a company that belonged to his son and wife.”
The Indian Express had on February 11 reported how the state home department under Fadnavis had neither issued an e-tender for the project nor called from proposals from other players, raising questions of arbitrariness in decision making. Further, the project was awarded after the model code of conduct for the Assembly polls had kicked in on September 21, last year.
CrispQ was set up on December 10, 2014 by Sharmila and Sumukh, who hold 10 per cent shares and 90 per cent shares, respectively.
Barve, who retires on February 29, had earlier said: “The software being offered is free. There is no question of any financial gains.”
Sumukh, while emphasising that the firm was doing the work without any financial gain, had maintained that it did not receive any undue favour from the government.
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