Former Maharashtra minister Ashish Shelar on Tuesday claimed the Maha Vikas Aghadi government may have helped IPS officer Param Bir Singh to flee and could be "preparing ground for him to seek political asylum" in a western country.
Speaking to reporters in Mumbai, Shelar, the Bharatiya Janata Party MLA from Mumbai, also claimed that the MVA government, comprising the Shiv Sena, the Nationalist Congress Party and the Congress, was obstructing the Centre's strong actions to tackle the drug menace in the country.
Recently, two non-bailable warrants were issued against Param Bir Singh in different extortion cases in Mumbai and neighbouring Thane.
Singh was shunted out from the post of Mumbai police commissioner in March this year in the aftermath of the recovery of an SUV with explosives near industrialist Mukesh Ambani's residence in south Mumbai and the arrest of dismissed police officer Sachin Waze in the case.
Singh later accused then then Maharashtra home minister Anil Deshmukh of corruption.
The IPS officer is also facing inquiry by the Maharashtra Anti-Corruption Bureau, and a case filed by a police officer from Akola against him under the Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes (Prevention of Atrocities Act).
Recently the Maharashtra government had told the Bombay high court that it did not know of Singh's whereabouts.
Shelar said, “The way the number of cases are being filed against Param Bir Singh, it seems to be a strategy for preparing grounds for the IPS officer to seek political asylum in a particular western country. If you speak against the government, you are eligible for such asylum.”
"The Maha Vikas Aghadi could be helping Singh to take political asylum in a western country by lodging several complaints against him," he said.
The idea would be to allow Singh to point at these complaints to seek political asylum by claiming that his life is in danger because he spoke against the ruling dispensation, the BJP leader claimed.
“The MVA government must have helped Singh to go missing, because if he gets caught, he may reveal some work done for leaders of the ruling parties,” Shelar alleged.
The real question is that since Param Bir Singh has all his documents, including the Aadhaar card, registered in Mumbai, how did he go missing from under the MVA's nose? he said.
Shelar also claimed the MVA government was obstructing the Centre's strong actions to tackle the drug menace in the country.
The remarks came in the wake of Maharashtra minister and NCP leader Nawab Malik seeking to link the opposition BJP in the state with an alleged drugs leader by tweeting the latter's photograph with former chief minister Devendra Fadnavis' wife Amruta Fadnavis.
Malik has also been targeting the Narcotics Control Bureau's Mumbai zonal director Sameer Wankhede, after he led a raid on a cruise ship last month in which drugs were allegedly seized and actor Shah Rukh Khan's son Aryan Khan was arrested with some others.
"There have been allegations regarding people who are against the country and are supplying drugs. However, the Union government's efforts to take strong actions against them are being opposed by these people, including some in the MVA government," Shelar said.
"Is state minister Nawab Malik such people's (anti-nationals supplying drugs) advocate?” he sought to know.
Shelar claimed that Malik was "dillusioned" because his son-in-law was found involved in an alleged drugs racket.
"He should be called 'Khayali Malik', and not Nawab Malik,” the BJP leader said.
Shelar, without taking any names, said "these people" also opposed new amendments to the Information Technology Act proposed by the Union government.
"The amendments were aimed at intercepting communication on various internet platforms which are suspected to be used for drug supply. The Union government wanted to increase the BSF's jurisdiction to probe drug supply cases in up to 50 km area from the (international) border, but it was also opposed by these people,” he claimed.
Asked about the NCB not taking action against some other people suspected to be involved in the cruise drugs case, Shelar said, "The DRI (Directorate of Revenue Intelligence) did not sit quiet like the Maharashtra government's anti-narcotics department. They (DRI) did take action against many people.”
The MLA also said he or the BJP were not here to issue a "character certificate" to Wankhede.
"The Union government is trying to curb the drug menace, but some people, including in the MVA government, are trying to halt the process. Even the steps to make the NDPS (Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substances) Act stronger were opposed by these people,” Shelar claimed.