MUMBAI: In a denial that any discussion on mobilisation of Rs 100 crore had taken place, dismissed assistant police inspector Sachin Waze said before the Justice K U Chandiwal commission on Thursday that there was discussion exclusively on the business before the state legislature at a meeting convened on February 21 by the then home minister Anil Deshmukh, which he attended.
In his letter sent to chief minister Uddhav Thackeray on March 20, former Mumbai police commissioner Param Bir had stated that the home minister had asked Waze to accumulate Rs 100 crore a month from bars and restaurants in the city. Singh had stated that in and around mid-February and thereafter, the then home minister Deshmukh had called Waze to his official residence. At that time, one or two staff members of the home minister, including his private secretary Sanjeev Palande, were also present.
During cross-examination by Shekhar Jagtap, counsel for Palande, Waze said the then home minister had convened a meeting on February 21 at his official residence. Waze said the meeting pertained to preparations for legislative assembly questions and immediately after the meeting, he left the minister’s residence.
On November 22, Singh’s counsel Abhinav Chandrachud had told the commission that the March 20 letter was hearsay, based on the information given by Singh’s subordinates and colleagues. Following Singh’s letter, Anil Deshmukh had quit the cabinet, and the state government set up a one-man commission led by Justice K U Chandiwal to probe the charges levelled by the former Mumbai CP.
The commission is likely to issue a production warrant against Anil Deshmukh for his presence before the panel during the course of inquiry. Deshmukh’s lawyer will cross-examine Waze on Friday.
NCP spokesperson Nawab Malik said on Thursday that from the depositions before the Justice K U Chandiwal commission, it appeared that former Param Bir Singh’s letter was politically motivated and was an attempt to destabilize the Maha Vikas Aghadi government. “Singh had written a very damaging letter, following which the NCP leadership sacked Anil Deshmukh. Now, his counsel tells the commission that the letter was hearsay, based on information given by his subordinates. I am surprised how a senior IPS officer can write a letter to the chief minister without verification,” Malik said.

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