Hasan Gafoor, who was the Mumbai Commissioner of Police during the 26/11 Mumbai terror attacks, had accused senior police officials, including Param Bir Singh of not taking on the terrorists. Gafoor had said Joint Commissioner in-charge of law and order K.L. Prasad, Crime Branch Additional Commissioner Deven Bharati, southern region Additional Commissioner K. Venkatesham and Anti-Terrorism Squad Additional Commissioner of Police Param Bir Singh “did not appear keen on responding to situation”.
The four police officers were critical of Hasan Gafoor while deposing before the Pradhan Committee that was set up to probe the response to the 26/11 Mumbai terror attacks. To Gafoor’s remarks, Param Bir Singh had threatened legal action for ‘defaming’ him. Singh had defended himself and claimed that he was seen on several television channels when he was at Hotel Taj and Oberoi. The television channels were live telecasting the siege which had eventually helped the terrorists, as per reports.
Param Bir Singh’s father, Hoshiar Singh in March 2010 filed a defamation case against Hasan Gafoor which was stayed by the Bombay High Court.
26/11 Mumbai terror attack
On 26th November 2008, ten terrorists from Pakistan wrecked havoc in Mumbai. They held the country on ransom for almost three days as some of them holed up inside star hotels in Mumbai, holding hostages, many of them foreign nationals, as the ghastly scenes were telecast live in our living rooms.
In 2009, soon after the 26/11 Mumbai terror attack, a petition was filed against Parambir Singh and three other additional commissioners of police on the charges of dereliction of duty during the Mumbai terror attack.
A Public interest litigation (PIL) seeking action against these officers and their suspension on the charges that officers such as Param Bir Singh had failed to follow orders of the then police commissioner.
The petitioner had claimed that had the senior officers obeyed the orders, the terror situation would have been brought under control much earlier and many lives could have been saved. The petitions said that if the officers had acted properly, two more terrorists could have been caught alive. The petition was filed on Hasan Gafoor’s statement.
Former Mumbai Police Commissioner Julio Ribeiro called Singh a ‘Bad cop’
In July 2018, Ribeiro had written an article on the two cops fighting for the post of the Mumbai Police Commissioner. Without naming Param Bir Singh, Ribeiro had drawn up a ‘good cop-bad cop’ analogy, where Singh was believed to be the ‘bad cop’. Taking an offence to the same, Singh had sought an apology from Ribeiro and had even threatened to sue him.
Sadhvi Pragya alleged Param Bir Singh tortured her in custody for ‘Hindu terror bogey’
One of the most controversial tenures of Param Bir Singh was during his days at the ATS. Param Bir Singh, who was the Additional Commissioner of Police (ATS), was accused of severe torture by current Bhopal MP Sadhvi Pragya Singh.
Sadhvi Pragya Singh Thakur had alleged that she was subjected to extreme torture by the Mumbai ATS to make her forcefully confess to her role in the alleged ‘saffron terror case’. Making serious allegations against then members of the Mumbai ATS, Sadhvi Pragya had disclosed that ATS officers including Param Bir Singh had kept her in illegal detention and tortured her for 13 days.
Param Bir Singh gave clean chit to Ajit Pawar in irrigation scam
Param Bir Singh, IPS officer of the 1988-batch, was appointed as the Mumbai police commissioner in February this year. Singh, prior to his appointment as the Mumbai Police, he was the Director-General (DG) of the Anti-Corruption Bureau (ACB).
Param Bir Singh’s tenure at the Maharashtra ACB was also controversial. In December last year, the ACB under Singh had given a clean chit to then Deputy Chief Minister and NCP leader Ajit Pawar in the irrigation scam. Ajit Pawar was accused in a scam involving 12 Vidarbha Irrigation Development Corporation (VIDC) projects.