Mumbai (Maharashtra) [India], April 10 (ANI): Maharashtra Special Principal Secretary in the Home Ministry Amitabh Gupta, who allegedly gave travel permission to the Wadhawan family of DHFL Group from Khandala to Mahabaleshwar amid the COVID-19 lockdown, has been sent on compulsory leave with immediate effect untill completion of probe in the matter.
"Amitabh Gupta has been sent on compulsory leave with immediate effect till the pending of inquiry, which will be initiated against him," state home minister Anil Deshmukh said.
Members of the Wadhawan family have been placed under institutional quarantine by the local police in Mahabaleshwar after they visited the town at a time when the entire country is under lockdown to prevent the spread of COVID-19.
The process to file a complaint has been initiated at the local police station for "violation" of lockdown norms.
The Maharashtra home minister had informed that it will be inquired how 23 people of the Wadhawan family got permission to travel from Khandala to Mahabaleshwar.
However, the issue generated political heat with BJP leader Kirit Somaiya writing to Maharashtra Governor Bhagat Singh Koshyari, seeking a probe into the Wadhawan family getting "special permission" and "VIP treatment" from the Maharashtra government.
"Request to order an inquiry on how and why the Maharashtra government issued special passes/permission and gave VIP treatment to Wadhwan brothers to travel from Mumbai to Mahabaleshwar in a convoy. It may be noted that they are on bail in DHFL/Yes Bank Fraud case," Somaiya said in the letter.
Sources said that the permission letter was issued by Principal Secretary, Special, in the Home Department. It mentions the number of five cars and also lists the names of persons, who will be in each car.
The letter stated that they were known to the signatory and were his family friends and travelling from Khandala to Mahableshwar for "family emergency." It seeks cooperation to allow them to reach the destination.
DHFL promoters Kapil and Dheeraj Wadhawan had not appeared before the Enforcement Directorate (ED) last month in connection with the probe against Yes Bank promoter Rana Kapoor and others for money laundering.
Kapil Wadhawan had apparently cited coronavirus pandemic as the reason for his inability to join the investigation. (ANI)