SC rejects Anil Deshmukh’s pleas that challenged CBI probe

Elisha Vaswani

The Apex Court on Wednesday dismissed the petitions of the erstwhile Home Minister, Anil Deshmukh.

The petition filed by State Government of Maharashtra and Anil Deshmukh was primarily opposing the previous order of Hon’ble Bombay High Court. An order which permitted a CBI probe into the charges levied against him.

Kapil Sibal submitted that the allegations lacked evidentiary value on grounds of hearsay. They were neither prima facie reliable nor admissible in his opinion.

Sibal further contended that whether an oral statement alone would suffice and lead to attract an inquiry by CBI.

While the hearing is currently under way, Justice Kaul observed, “Nature of allegations and personas involved needs an inquiry by an independent agency. It is a matter of public confidence. We are not inclined to entertain this. Dismissed.”

Justice Kaul laid emphasis on facts, the nature of peronas that are associated and allegations claimed by an extremely senior officer were of a very serious nature.

One of the arguments put before the bench was that the High Court’s order of probe was owing to Anil Deshmukh’s designation and since he no longer held the post, such an inquiry was not necessitated.

However, Justice Hemant Gupta rightly pointed out that as on the date of the High Court order, Deshmukh was the Home Minister.

The bench’s final observation read, “Given the serious nature of allegations, and the personas involved, the matter do require an independent agency to investigate the matter. It is a matter of public confidence. We may also note that what has been ordered is only a preliminary enquiry. Therefore, we are no inclined to interfere with the impugned order.”