Atrocities case not to pressurise ex-CP Param Bir Singh to withdraw complaint against Deshmukh: Cop to HC

NEW DELHI: The Supreme Court Friday said it is “shocking” that former Mumbai Police Commissioner Param Bir Singh, who has served the state for over 30 years, is now stating that he has no trust in state police and is seeking transfer of all inquiries against him to an independent agency outside Maharashtra.

“It is commonly said, the person who lives in glass house should not throw stones at others,” said a vacation bench of Justices Hemant Gupta and V Ramasubramanian while hearing Singh’s plea seeking transfer of inquiries against him outside Maharashtra.

After the apex court observed that it will pass an order dismissing the petition, Singh’s counsel said he would withdraw the plea and would avail other appropriate remedy.

Singh, a 1988-batch IPS officer, was removed from the post of Mumbai Police Commissioner on March 17 and was made the General Commander of Maharashtra State Home Guard after he levelled allegations of corruption and misconduct against the then Home Minister and senior NCP leader Anil Deshmukh.

Senior advocate Mahesh Jethmalani, appearing for Singh, said the petitioner can’t keep on facing one case after the other just because he is a “whistleblower” in the matter.

He said Singh is seeking directions for transferring all inquiries which are already ordered against him outside the state and also that the investigation be transferred to an independent agency like the CBI.

“This is surprising us. You have been a part of Maharashtra state cadre and served it for over 30 years. Now you are saying that you have no trust in your own state police. This is shocking,” the bench observed.

During the hearing conducted through video-conferencing, Jethmalani said that the Bombay High Court had ordered a CBI probe into allegations of Singh against Deshmukh.

He argued that Singh has been pressurised by the inquiry officer to withdraw his letter in which he had levelled allegations against the former minister.

“These are two different things. The inquiry against the former minister is different and the inquiry against you (Singh) is different. You have served in the police force for over 30 years. You should not have doubt on the police force. You cannot say now that you want inquiries to be done outside the state,” the bench said.

Jethmalani told the bench that Singh is not living in a “glass house” and false cases have been lodged to frame him.

The Bombay High Court had earlier ordered a CBI probe into allegations of Singh against Deshmukh who had to resign as the minister.

In his plea filed in the apex court, the senior police officer has alleged that he has been made to face several inquiries by the state government and its instrumentalities and sought their transfer outside Maharashtra and a probe into them by an independent agency like the CBI.

Singh has been facing inquiries, including the one under the Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes (Prevention of Atrocities) Act in a case of 2015 and he has termed this as a witch-hunt by the state agency.

Singh, in his earlier plea filed before the top court, had sought a CBI probe against Deshmukh who, he claimed, had asked police officers, including Sachin Waze, to extort Rs 100 crore from bars and restaurants.

The top court had then asked him to go before the Bombay High Court which later ordered CBI probe into Singh’s allegations.

The state government and the NCP leader subsequently filed an appeal in the apex court but failed to get any relief against the high court order.

Deshmukh denied any wrongdoing and had said there was not an iota of substantive evidence to even prima facie establish that any of the allegations made by Singh had an element of truth.

In its 52-page judgement passed earlier, the high court had said that Singh’s allegations against Deshmukh had put at stake the citizen’s faith in the state police.

Such allegations, made by a serving police officer, against the state home minister could not be left unattended, and were required to be probed into, if prima facie, they made a case of a cognisable offence, the high court had said.

The high court’s verdict had come on three PILs including one filed by Singh seeking several reliefs as also a CBI probe into the matter.