The Enforcement Directorate on Sunday conducted searches at two homes of former Maharashtra Home Minister Anil Deshmukh in Nagpur district in connection with a money laundering case, reported PTI, citing a police official.
One of the homes is located in Katol town, about 60 km from Nagpur city, and another is his ancestral home in Wadvihira village.
Six Enforcement Directorate officials and a team of Central Reserve Police Force personnel reached Deshmukh’s homes early on Sunday, reported the Hindustan Times.
The searches are in connection with corruption allegations levelled by former Mumbai police chief Param Bir Singh, who had accused Deshmukh in March of extorting money from bars and restaurants in the city. In a letter to Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray, Singh wrote that suspended Assistant Police Inspector Sachin Vaze told him that the minister had asked him to collect Rs 100 crore every month through illegal channels.
The Enforcement Directorate and the Central Bureau of Investigation are both conducting inquiries in the case.
On Friday, the Enforcement Directorate had attached assets worth Rs 4.2 crore belonging to Deshmukh and his family. The attached assets include a residential flat worth Rs 1.54 crore, located in Worli, Mumbai, and 25 land parcels valued at Rs 2.67 crore located in Dhutum village of Maharashtra’s Raigad district.
The ED said that its investigation found that Deshmukh, during his tenure as the Maharashtra home minister, “received illegal gratification of approximately Rs 4.7 crore in cash from various orchestra bar owners” through Vaze.
After the High Court’s order, the CBI filed a First Information Report in April. Based on that FIR, the Enforcement Directorate also lodged a money laundering case against the Nationalist Congress Party leader.
On June 25, the Enforcement Directorate raided Deshmukh’s home in Nagpur in relation to the case. Subsequently, the agency arrested two of his aides, Sanjeev Palande and Kundan Shinde, under the Prevention of Money Laundering Act.
The investigating agency had summoned him after the raids, but Deshmukh sought more time. The agency then asked him to appear on June 29, which he again chose to skip. He skipped a third summons on July 5, alleging that the investigation against him was not transparent.
Deshmukh moved the Supreme Court on July 4, seeking protection from coercive action in the money laundering case.