Mumbai, Feb. 2: The Anti-Corruption Bureau (ACB), hoping to grill Daya Nayak once he is arrested, will have to wait till tomorrow to get its hands on the “encounter specialist”.
Bombay High Court today stayed the arrests of the police sub-inspector, his wife Komal and associate Rajendra Padate till tomorrow minutes after special court judge S.P. Mahajan rejected their anticipatory bail application.
ACB sleuths, who wanted to begin Nayak’s custodial interrogation to ferret out more details about his alleged illegal wealth, had to return empty-handed.
Soon after Mahajan, who had reserved his verdict on the bail plea till today, observed that there was a prima facie case against the trio, Nayak’s counsels moved the high court next door, challenging the special court order.
Justice R.S. Mohite of the high court granted interim protection to the three till their appeal is heard and transferred the matter to Justice V.M. Kanade.
Earlier, the Nayaks had pleaded before the special court that their custody was not necessary and had denied the allegations of accumulating wealth disproportionate to their known sources of income.
Public prosecutor R.V. Kini had argued against granting them anticipatory bail, saying the ACB had collected sufficient evidence against the sub-inspector and custodial interrogation would help in gathering more information about his “illegitimate wealth”.
The ACB had last month conducted raids at six places, including Nayak’s official residence at the Kandivli police quarters, and allegedly found assets worth Rs 41.75 lakh.
The bureau claimed that Nayak also owned several benami properties and businesses and was involved in money-laundering.
After the ACB lodged a case under several sections of the Prevention of Corruption Act, Mumbai police placed Nayak under suspension pending inquiry.
With 83 encounters to his credit during his stint at the crime intelligence unit, Nayak was among the bunch of Mumbai police’s trigger-happy ‘Dirty Harrys’ involved in several high-profile operations, including the IC-814 hijack investigations, the Bollywood-underworld nexus case and anti-terror cases.