Friday, December 2, 2022

Sanjay Raut out on bail; two other MVA leaders Malik, Deshmukh still in prison

Shiv Sena leader Sanjay Raut got bail in an alleged money laundering case two days ago, but two other leaders of the Maha Vikas Aghadi (MVA), Nawab Malik and Anil Deshmukh, continue to be behind bars.
Raut (61), Rajya Sabha MP and executive editor of Saamana, the mouthpiece of the Uddhav Thackeray-led Shiv Sena, is one of the vocal leaders of the MVA coalition of the Sena, Nationalist Congress Party and Congress.
He was arrested by the Enforcement Directorate (ED) in the Patra Chawl redevelopment case on August 1 this year. A special court granted him bail on November 9.
Nawab Malik (63), who was the NCP’s chief spokesperson and minority development minister in the MVA government, was arrested by the ED in February 2022 over a two-decade-old property deal linked to Haseena Parkar, fugitive gangster Dawood Ibrahim’s sister.
Anil Deshmukh (72), another NCP leader who was home minister in the MVA government, was arrested by the ED in November 2021, and subsequently by the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) in an alleged corruption case.
Former Mumbai police commissioner Param Bir Singh had alleged in March 2021 that Deshmukh had asked police officials to collect Rs 100 crore every month from bars and restaurants in Mumbai. Deshmukh denied the allegations but stepped down as a minister later.
He got bail from the Bombay High Court in the ED case in October, but could not walk out of prison as he is yet to get bail in the case registered by the CBI.
The CBI told the Bombay High Court while opposing his bail plea recently that there were serious allegations of corruption, extortion and conspiracy against Deshmukh, and there is sufficient evidence to establish his involvement.
Both the ED and CBI have filed charge sheets against him. The ED also assented to an application filed by dismissed police official Sachin Vaze to turn approver against Deshmukh.
Vaze is the prime accused in the case of planting of explosives near industrialist Mukesh Ambani’s residence `Antilia’, and the subsequent murder of businessman and case witness Mansukh Hiran.
Nawab Malik’s properties have also been attached by the ED.
He is currently undergoing treatment in a private hospital and the agency has demanded that a medical board examine him.
Malik’s bail plea was rejected by the High Court as well as the Supreme Court.
Before his arrest, Malik had targeted then Mumbai zone director of the Narcotics Control Bureau Sameer Wankhede after the NCB booked Aryan Khan, actor Shah Rukh Khan’s son, in an alleged drug seizure case.
On Wednesday, while granting bail to Sanjay Raut, the Mumbai court said that his arrest was illegal and unwarranted.
NCP leader Supriya Sule said her party was expecting relief for Deshmukh and Malik as well. “They should get justice. We have full faith in the judiciary,” she said after Raut’s release from prison.

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