Mumbai, Sept 9: Maharashtra Government on Tuesday promoted Mumbai Police Commissioner Rakesh Maria as Director General of Homeguard. He was replaced by Ahmed Javed as city's new top cop. Maria's post was upgraded from Additional DG rank to DGP rank.
The decision of the Maharashtra Government giving unexpected promotion to Maria set tongues wagging across the political establishment. Various theories have come to fore why Maria was removed from his post. Here is whole matter explained.
Why Maha govt's decision is under question
- Maria was removed from commissioner post when he was about to crack sensational Sheena murder case.
- He was transferred and made DGP of Homeguard just 22 days before his scheduled term to expire on September 30.
- After controversy hit the headlines, Maharashtra Additonal Chief Secretary (Home) K.P. Bakshi said that there was 'no politics' behind the decision
- He further refuted the theory that Maria was removed because of his role in Sheena Bora murder case.
- Maha government attributed the change of guard to the upcoming festival season of Ganeshotsav and Bakr Eid
- Defending the move, Govt said that since a reshuffle at that point would not have given the new incumbent sufficient time to settle down to the awesome responsibilities.
Politics behind removal of Maria?
- It is being said that Maria was close to NCP chief Sharad Pawar. Previous Cong-NCP govt helped him to get promotion many a times in past.
- NCP controlled Maharashtra Home Ministry had made 1981 batch IPS officer Maria Mumbai commissioner superseding manysenior officers.
- At that time 1980 batch officers-Ahmed Javed and Vijay Kamble had expressed shock and agony over Government's move to favour Maria.
- Reportedly, BJP led Fadnavis government wanted to remove Maria in June itself because of his meeting with IPL chief Lalit Modi in London last year.
Role in Sheena murder case
- Bharatiya Janata Party leader and Mumbai's former top cop Satpal Singh alleged that Maria was 'close' to former television tycoon Peter Mukerjea
- In the past few days, doubts were expressed whether he was going soft on Peter Mukerjea, who had been questioned several times since the case first broke out on August 25.
- Speculation was rife in official circles that a major 'breakthrough' was expected in the case with Mukerjea's sustained and repeated grilling, several times by Maria himself.
- Maria's hands-on approach in the the case - especially his overzealous attitude of personal interrogation of the three prime accused raised eyebrows
- Reportedly Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis had snubbed him recently asking why he was giving special attention to this case. Why he was not focussing on other crime cases.
Maria was set to expose money-laundering?
- According to TOI report, NCP has alleged that Maria was removed from the post as his probe was set to expose money-laundering and possibly implicate influential business houses.
- The gossip mill has also been grindingly furiously over the possibility of some big political names expected to tumble out from the financial and property tangles that were being unraveled by Maria
- It is no secret that both Peter and Indrani were considered close to some major political players in the early 2000s when they were in the thick of launching their television channel businesses.
(With inputs from agency)