New Delhi/Mumbai: The Enforcement Directorate (ED) has summoned Shiv Sena leader and Maharashtra Transport Minister Anil Parab for questioning on Tuesday in the money laundering case registered against former state minister Anil Deshmukh and others, officials said on Sunday.
The Shiv Sena said the party would fight the matter legally and suggested that the summon was linked to the arrest of Union minister and BJP leader Narayan Rane in Ratnagiri, the district of which Parab is the guardian minister.
Parab, 56, is also a minister of parliamentary affairs in the Maha Vikas Aghadi (MVA) government led by Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray and is a three-term member of the Maharashtra Legislative Council.
Officials said he has been asked by the ED to depose before the investigating officer of the case at the agency's office in south Mumbai on Tuesday.
They said Parab is to be questioned in the money laundering case being investigated against former Maharashtra home minister Anil Deshmukh after certain "disclosures" have been made by other accused and those involved in the case.
Reacting to the summon, Shiv Sena MP and spokesperson Sanjay Raut said the ED notice to Parab was "expected" and the party would fight it legally.
"Well done. As soon as the Jan Ashirwad Yatra concluded, Anil Parab has been served ED notice as expected. The central government has begun its work. The epicentre of the earthquake was Ratnagiri. Parab is the district guardian minister. Understand the chronology. Will fight legal battle legally. Jai Maharashtra," Raut tweeted.
Union minister Rane was recently arrested from Ratnagiri for his comment that he would have "slapped" CM Thackeray.
Rane, a bete noire of both Shiv Sena and Thackeray, had made the remark during his Jan Ashirwad Yatra.
The latest summons pertain to the criminal investigation being carried out by the ED in the alleged Rs 100 crore bribery-cum-extortion racket in the Maharashtra police establishment that led to Deshmukh's resignation in April.
The ED case against Deshmukh, who was earlier the home minister in the MVA government, and others came after the CBI booked him in the corruption case related to allegations of at least Rs 100 crore bribe made by former Mumbai Police commissioner Param Bir Singh.
Deshmukh, who had skipped ED summons at least five times till now, had said that Singh made the allegations against him after he was removed from the post of Mumbai Police Commissioner.
The ED may question Parab about the statements it has twice recorded of jailed police officer and another accused in this case, Sachin Waze.
Waze was arrested by the NIA in the case of recovery of an explosives-laden SUV from near the Mumbai house of Reliance Industries chairman Mukesh Ambani.
Waze had earlier alleged in a letter he sought to submit before a court that in January 2021, Parab asked him to look into an inquiry against "fraudulent" contractors listed in the Mumbai civic body and "collect" at least Rs 2 crore from about 50 such contractors.
Parab had then rejected Waze's claims and had said he was ready to face any probe into the allegations.