The Bombay High Court on Thursday refused to quash the FIR filed against former Maharashtra Home Minister Anil Deshmukh by the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) on charges of corruption.
Rejecting a plea by Deshmukh and the Maharashtra government, a division bench of Justice SS Shinde and Justice NJ Jamdar said that "it deserved to be dismissed".
Senior advocate Amit Desai, appearing for Deshmukh, argued that the case involved important questions of law that need to be studied for taking appropriate steps. However, Solicitor General Tushar Mehta, representing the CBI, contended that no question of law was involved.
Desai told the High Court that the CBI had failed to obtain approval under Section 17A of the Prevention of Corruption Act from the Maharashtra government before beginning their court-ordered preliminary inquiry. He said that this made the entire enquiry illegal.
“We live in a society with the presumption of dishonesty,” Deshmukh’s counsel said. “Therefore an allegation becomes enough.”
On March 20, former Mumbai Police chief Param Bir Singh had accused Deshmukh of extorting money from bars, restaurants and hookah parlours in Mumbai.