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Court asks senior ED officials to apprise it of money laundering case against O P Chautala

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Press Trust of India New Delhi
Not satisfied with the responses of ED, a Delhi court has asked the probe agency's three senior officials to apprise it in person of the details of ongoing investigation in an over Rs 6 crore money laundering case against former Haryana chief minister O P Chautala.
Special Judge Kamini Lau sought presence of ED's Joint Director Rajeshwar Singh, Assistant Director D D Negi and Joint Director D S Siddhu before it on March 7 and give details about the status of the investigations, including the role of Chautala's family members, and the manner in which the proceeds of crime were generated and the evidence relating to structuring and layering.
The court noted in its recent order that when it asked the ED's special Public Prosecutor and the investigating officer to provide details regarding generation of proceeds of crime, structuring, layering and projection of the alleged proceeds as legal, they were unable to satisfy it.
It asked the officers to point out the material or evidence related to identification of the properties which are under investigation and the date on which they were projected as "untainted" or legally acquired and its termination date.
The probe agency has been asked to give details of the role of Chautala's wife Sneh Lata and two sons Abhay Singh Chautala and Ajay Singh Chautala and the status of the investigation against them.
The court also asked ED to furnish the status of further investigations relating to remaining immovable properties.
Chautala, not present in the court, sought exemption from personal appearing for the day on the ground that he was 84 years old and was admitted in Medanta Hospital in Gurgaon, claiming to be suffering from lower respiratory tract infection.
The court had in January granted bail to Chautala in the money laundering case and imposed various conditions on him, including surrendering his passport before it.
The bail application was opposed by ED's special public prosecutor N K Matta who had said that further examination of the accused was required for identifying the money trail and other suspected beneficiaries in the case.
Chautala, who is out on three-week parole, is serving a 10-year jail term in a separate case related to teachers' recruitment scam.
ED has sought Chautala's prosecution under the provisions of the Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA).
The agency had earlier informed the court that disproportionate assets worth Rs 6.09 crore were "illegally generated" by Chautala between May 1993 and May 2006, through corruption and were projected as untainted property by utilising them in the construction and in acquiring movable assets.
Chautala is serving imprisonment for illegally recruiting 3,206 Junior Basic Trained (JBT) teachers in Haryana in 2000.
The CBI had on March 26, 2010 named Chautala in a charge sheet, indicting him for allegedly possessing assets worth Rs 6.09 crore. The ED had filed a separate case based on the CBI's FIR.

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First Published: Feb 26 2019 | 2:50 PM IST

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