Who's ex-Mumbai top cop arrested in NSE phone tapping case
The Enforcement Directorate (ED) on Tuesday arrested former Mumbai Police Commissioner Sanjay Pandey in an illegal phone tapping case. The top cop was allegedly involved in tapping the phones of National Stock Exchange (NSE) employees between 2009 to 2017. He is the second cop to be arrested by any government agency only a few days after retiring as the Mumbai Police chief.
The 1986-batch officer was arrested in the NSE co-location scam case, only a week after former agency chief Chitra Ramkrishna was put behind bars. He was taken into custody after being questioned by the ED for 7 hours. He is currently named in two FIRs (ED and CBI) for tapping phones through iSec Services Pvt. Ltd, a company founded by him.
The 59-year-old cop joined the Indian Police Service (IPS) in 1986 after completing a Computer Science degree from IIT-Kanpur in 1983. He was appointed as Assistant Superintendent of Police (ASP) and was promoted to Superintendent of Police (SP) in 1990. He also worked as an intern at Crompton Greaves in Mumbai in the programming department.
Pandey held the post of Deputy Commissioner of Police (DCP) in the Dharavi district during the Mumbai riots of 1992-93. He was recognized by Amnesty International for his unbiased work during the riots. Pandey then handled high-profile cases during his stint at the Economic Offences Wing of Mumbai Police. The top cop then went on to complete a Public Administration degree from Harvard University.
Pandey has been revered in the community for installing a state-wide network of computer systems to check crime and collate criminal data, which has sped up investigations for the force. He also served in the Prime Minister's security unit briefly when he was sent on Central Deputation. Pandey finally resigned from the force in April 2000 after an extensive career, reportedly after political interventions.
Pandey returned to the force in 2011 and after years of small postings, was appointed as the Director General of Police (DGP) in 2017. He worked non high-profile units and enhanced the force's cybercrime unit by drafting plans for nationwide coordination. The Uddhav Thackeray government appointed him as the Maharashtra DGP in April 2021, causing anger among senior IPS officers.
Pandey was appointed as the Mumbai Police Commissioner by the Maha Vikas Aghadi government in March this year, and was known to closely work with the Thackeray government. During his tenure, the Mumbai Police booked many opposition leaders, including Kriti Somaiya, Narayan Rane, and Mohit Kamboj. He retired as the Commissioner on June 30, 2022 and was soon called for questioning by the ED.