The CBI took into custody one Santosh Jagtap on Sunday in connection with a case of alleged corruption against former Maharashtra home minister Anil Deshmukh, making it the first arrest in the high-profile case, officials said.
The agency arrested Jagtap, an alleged middleman, from Maharashtra's Thane in the morning, they said, adding that the accused was evading the probe even after the issuance of non-bailable warrants against him last month. The Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) had raided the premises of Jagtap in August and seized Rs 9 lakh in cash, the officials said.
The agency has booked Deshmukh and other unidentified accused under the Indian Penal Code (IPC) section related to criminal conspiracy and provisions of the Prevention of Corruption Act for an "attempt to obtain undue advantage for improper and dishonest performance of public duty".
After he was removed from the Mumbai police commissioner's post, Param Bir Singh had alleged in a letter to Maharashtra Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray that Deshmukh had asked Waze to extort over Rs 100 crore a month from the bars and restaurants in the city.
"The Preliminary Enquiry prima facie revealed that a cognizable offence is made out in the matter, wherein the then home minister of Maharashtra, Anil Deshmukh, and unknown others attempted to obtain undue advantage for improper and dishonest performance of their public duty," the CBI FIR alleges. According to the CBI manual, a Preliminary Enquiry (PE) is initiated to assess if there is enough prima facie material in the allegations to proceed with a regular case for a full-fledged probe, the officials said.
The CBI enquiry found that Waze, Assistant Police Inspector, Mumbai Police, was reinstated into the force after being out of police service for more than 15 years. He was entrusted with most of the sensational and important cases of Mumbai City Police and Deshmukh, the then home minister, knew about it, the FIR alleges.It also alleges that Deshmukh "and others" exercised undue influence over the transfer and posting of officials, thereby exercising undue influence over the performance of their official duties.