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IPS officer who helped Wadhawans during lockdown sent on compulsory leave

IPS officer who helped Wadhawans during lockdown sent on compulsory leave

Maharashtra government on Friday sent a senior IPS officer on compulsory leave for allowing DHFL promoters Kapil and Dheeraj Wadhawan to travel despite the ongoing lockdown, Home Minister Anil Deshmukh said.

"As per discussion with Hon. CM, Mr Amitabh Gupta, Principal Secretary (special), has been sent on compulsory leave with immediate effect, till the pending of enquiry, which will be initiated against him," Deshmukh said on Twitter. The Wadhawan family is caught in the multi-crore rupee Deewan Housing Finance (DHFL) scam.

The bureaucrat had issued a letter exempting the Wadhawans from the lockdown norms citing a family emergency.

"This is to just inform you that following are my family friends and travelling from Khandala to Mahabaleshwar for family emergency," the letter signed by Gupta stated. Wadhawans had travelled with 21 members of their family and friends in five cars.

The letter gave details of the five cars, their registration numbers and names of people travelling in every car. The Wadhawans were allowed to travel from Pune district to Satara district bypassing the state norms that district borders be sealed.

The issue came to light when residents protested after the Wadhawans and their friends reached Dewan bungalow in Mahabaleshwar. News agency PTI reported that they were detained in Mahabaleshwar.

A senior official in the state secretariat said that Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray was furious because the incident has embarrassed his administration which has been strictly enforcing the lockdown.

The home department is empowered to give such leeway or travel pass only to those who have family emergencies including hospitalisation or death of a family member.

The Enforcement Directorate (ED) had recently issued summons to Kapil and Dheeraj Wadhawan over money laundering charges in Yes Bank case and asked them to appear on March 17.

The duo reportedly cited the pandemic and skipped the appearance, officials said.

(Inputs and image from hindustantimes.com)

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