Mumbai: The Maharashtra Government has
paid the Supreme Court a fine of Rs 10 lakh imposed for
obstruction of police action against the money lender father
of a Congress legislator, allegedly at the behest of then
chief minister Vilasrao Deshmukh, now Union rural development
"The state government has paid the Rs 10 lakh fine," a
senior official said.
The development comes days after Supreme Court Judge
A K Ganguly expressed "shock" at Deshmukh`s continuation as a
union minister despite the court`s action.
Ganguly had said at a seminar in Mumbai on Saturday
that it was "sad and shocking to see how the government allows
and appreciates such ministers. Not only that, it also gives
them a Cabinet post. It is not a dignified act and I would
call it a shameless act."
Vilasrao Deshmukh faced severe criticism from the
Supreme Court bench of Justice Ganguly and Justice G S Singhvi
for shielding a Congress MLA`s family from complaints on money
lending by poor farmers during his tenure as chief minister.
The Supreme Court had in its December 14 judgement
termed Deshmukh`s behaviour as "anachronistic and incongruous"
and had enhanced to Rs 10 lakh the fine of Rs 25,000 imposed
by the Bombay high court on the Maharashtra government.
The court had said the action of Deshmukh was
condemnable as he acted beyond "all legal norms" for
"political consideration" despite Vidharbha region having the
dubious distinction of witnessing the largest number of