New Delhi | Jagran News Desk: In another setback for former Maharashtra Home Minister Anil Vasantrao Deshmukh, the Supreme Court on Thursday dismissed his plea in which he had challenged the Bombay High Court order that had directed a probe by the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) into the alleged corruption levelled against him by former Mumbai Police Commissioner Param Bir Singh.

During the hearing, the apex court observed that the charges against Deshmukh are "serious" and an "independent investigation" is required as several high officials of the Maharashtra government are involved in the matter.

"It was not your (Anil Deshmukh) enemy, who made the allegations against you but it was done by the one who was almost your right-hand man (Param Bir Singh)," Justice SK Kaul said, as reported by news agency ANI.

"The probe should be done against both," he added.

However, senior Congress leader Kapil Sibal, who was representing Deshmukh, said that that the law must be uniform for everyone and noted that a CBI probe cannot be ordered if an "allegation against a Minister not supported by evidence".

"There is no material or facts. These are hearsay statements...Sachin Waze tells another person and then that person tells Bhujbal and Bhujbal tells the Police Commissioner and then-Police Commissioner makes this statement," Sibal said, as reported by Bar and Bench.

Meanwhile, senior advocate AM Singhvi, appearing for the Maharashtra government, said that it has withdrawn consent and was aggrieved by the CBI probe.

"But here it only says preliminary enquiry. Here you order preliminary enquiry and not investigation...CBI reference becomes a ground to circumvent Section 156 (CrPC) also," Singhvi was quoted as saying by Bar and Bench.

The Bombay High Court had on Monday asked the CBI to start a preliminary inquiry within 15 days into corruption allegations against Deshmukh. The court had said that this was an "extraordinary" and "unprecedented" case that warranted an independent inquiry.

Following the court's order, Deshmukh had resigned from his position as as he felt that it was "inappropriate" to continue in office after the CBI steps in.

"I don't have the moral right to continue in office after the court order.I have decided to quit. Kindly relieve me from my post," he had said in his resignation letter.

Posted By: Aalok Sensharma