New Delhi: The Supreme Court on Monday protected former Mumbai police commissioner Param Bir Singh from arrest, directing him to co-operate with the investigation as the court described the situation “disturbing” where a former top cop of Mumbai was showing lack of faith in the police which he once headed.
Observing “We do find the picture very disturbing. An earlier Commissioner seems to show lack of faith in the police! We wonder what would happen to the common man and what kind of faith would they have in the police”, a bench comprising Justice Sanjay Kishan Kaul and Justice M.M. Sundresh protected Singh from arrest as court was informed that the former Mumbai police top cop has not fled from the country, nor absconding nor intends to abscond, but he is hiding as he is facing threat to his life if he returns to Maharashtra.
Issuing notice to the CBI and Maharashtra government on Singh’s plea that the entire matter involving him and the former Maharashtra Home Minister Anil Deshmukh should be investigated by the CBI and not just one aspect of involving allegations against Deshmukh and posting the matter for further hearing on December 6, the court in its order said that the “matter has become curiouser and curiouser in the battle between the then Home Minister and the then Police Commissioner.”
Having issued the notice to CBI and Maharashtra government, the court
ordered that in the meantime Param Bir Singh “shall join the investigation but shall not be arrested. A copy of the order to accompany the notice.”
In the course of the last hearing of the matter on November 18, 2021, the court had declined to pass any order observing that it won’t consider his application until his whereabouts are disclosed. “No protection, no hearing until we know where you are,”, the bench had observed in the last hearing.
His lawyer, who had then sought time till today to get instructions told the court that Singh doesn’t want to run away. “The issue, however, is that there is a very genuine threat to his life as soon as he enters Maharashtra.”