The Bombay High Court on Friday rejected former Maharashtra Home Minister Anil Deshmukh’s petition to cancel the Enforcement Directorate’s summons against him in a money laundering case, the Hindustan Times reported. The court also said that it would not stop the central agency from arresting him.

The bench of Justices Nitin Jamdar and Sarang Kotwal said that Deshmukh could apply to a competent court for anticipatory bail under Section 438 of the Code of Criminal Procedure.

The section allows an individual, who believes they were arrested for a non-bailable offence, to request bail from a High Court or a sessions court. The court can grant the bail after examining the individual’s request.

Deshmukh has ignored five summons sent to him by the Enforcement Directorate till August 18. The Enforcement Directorate has alleged that Deshmukh has committed an offence under Section 174 of the Indian Penal Code by ignoring the summons. The agency had sought court’s intervention in the matter.

Under Section 174 of the Indian Penal Code, a court can order action against a person for not obeying summons, notice, order, or proclamation from a public servant.

Deshmukh has been accused of coercing police officers to extort money on his behalf from the owners of bars and restaurants in Mumbai. Former Mumbai Police chief Param Bir Singh had publicly accused the Nationalist Congress Party leader in March.

Singh had alleged that dismissed police officer Sachin Vaze had been asked by Deshmukh to collect Rs 100 crore every month through illegal channels. He had also accused the former Maharashtra home minister of frequently interfering with police investigations in various cases.

Deshmukh had denied all the charges against him. But the Nationalist Congress Party leader resigned as the home minister of Maharashtra on April 5.

Two days later, Vaze corroborated Singh’s allegations against Deshmukh. Vaze also alleged that the Nationalist Congress Party leader and state Transport Minister Anil Parab demanded more than Rs 100 crore from him.

The Enforcement Directorate has claimed that more than Rs 4 crore collected from bar owners between December and February was routed to Deshmukh’s charitable trust in Nagpur through four shell companies in Delhi.