Mumbai: The Maharashtra government claimed before the Bombay High Court on Wednesday that as former Mumbai Police Commissioner Param Bir Singh was not traceable, it would not continue with its statement of not taking coercive action against the ex-top cop in the atrocities case.
A division bench of Justices Nitin Jamdar and Sarang Kotwal was hearing a petition filed by Singh seeking the quashing of the FIR filed against him under the Scheduled Caste and Scheduled Tribes (Prevention of Atrocities) Act [Atrocities Act] on a complaint by police inspector Bhimrao Ghadge.
Darius Khambata, senior counsel appearing for the government, said that in view of Singh not being traceable, the circumstances had changed and hence they would not like to continue with their earlier assurance given before the HC.
Khambata said, “He (Singh) isn’t traceable. In these circumstances, we do not want to continue our earlier statement where the government said it would not take any coercive action against him.”
Pending hearing in the petition, the state government had said on May 24 that it would not take coercive action against Singh. The statement was continued on various occasions during the hearing on the petition.
Mahesh Jethmalani, counsel for Singh, said that Singh had not been declared as an absconder yet.
“In this case, he (Singh) was summoned twice and both the times he has responded,” argued Jethmalani.
In April, Thane Police had registered the FIR against Singh in the atrocities case, following a complainant made by inspector BR Ghadge, posted at Akola city police control room.
Ghadge had made a series of allegations of corruption against Singh and other officers when Singh was posted in Thane. He has alleged in the FIR that Singh pressured him to drop the names of some persons from a case and when he (Ghadge) refused, the IPS officer framed him in false cases.
The FIR was registered under various sections of the Indian Penal Code and provisions of the Atrocities Act.
Singh’s counsel has claimed that the FIR was a backlash over his allegations of corruption against former Maharashtra Home Minister Anil Deshmukh. However, the government has said the FIR was registered as the complaint had disclosed the commission of offence.