Mumbai, Jan 2 (IANS): Mumbai Police faced further embarrassment Saturday as five policemen, including an Indian Police Service (IPS) officer, faced possible suspension for attending a Christmas eve party thrown by a mafia don.
The development came a day after televisions aired footage of the party showing the policemen partying with the don. Also Friday, the Maharashtra government served show cause notices to eight IPS officers over missing files related to the purchase of 110 bullet-proof jackets in 2002.
Acting quickly after scenes of the policemen dancing with the don shamed the force, a police enquiry recommended suspension of Deputy Commissioner of Police Vishwas Salve and four others.
They include Assistant Commissioner of Police Prakash Wani, Senior Inspector R.S. Khakale, Crime Branch Inspector Praful Phadke and Crime Branch Assistant Sub-Inspector T. Salunkhe.
All of them attended the party hosted by D.K. Rao, an alleged henchman of underworld don Chhota Rajan.
The party took place in a private club in Chembur, a northeast Mumbai suburb where the policemen were seen eating, drinking and dancing with men from the underworld.
The party was ostensibly to celebrate the acquittal of Rao from 31 serious criminal cases.
"Police have gathered sufficient evidence to recommend suspension of these policemen," a Crime Branch officer said on condition of anonymity.
The latest development is the second blow in as many days to the Mumbai Police, which has been under attack ever since 10 terrorists from Pakistan sailed into the city in November last year and went on a killing spree, leaving 160 Indians and foreigners dead.
The government Friday issued notices to top police officers to explain the disappearance of files related to the purchase of bullet proof jackets.
A probe by the Anti-Corruption Bureau (ACB) in 2004-05 found that these jackets - purchased from NTB HiTech Ceramics, Pune, at a cost of Rs.2.7 million - were of poor quality.
It is widely suspected that police officials who combated the Pakistani terrorists in the 26/11 attacks were given these sub-standard bullet-proof jackets, leading to the death of some of them.