The South Asian Times

27 June 2019 04:11 AM

ED moves HC seeking to cancel Robert Vadra's bail (Lead)

By IANS

New Delhi, May 24: The Enforcement Directorate has moved the Delhi High Court seeking to cancel the bail plea of Robert Vadra, the brother-in-law of Congress President Rahul Gandhi, in a money laundering case.

Vadra was granted anticipatory bail by a trial court on April 1 on the condition that he must not leave the country without permission and join the investigation whenever needed.

The ED, in its plea, has challenged the trial court order and said that protection would be detrimental for the purpose of carrying out the investigation in the case with a free hand by the investigating officer in the crucial aspects of the case.

The case relates to ownership of 1.9 million pounds of assets overseas by Vadra. It pertains to undisclosed foreign assets and entities meant to evade tax.

"Because it is trite to say that the anticipatory bail, to some extent, intrudes in the sphere of investigation of crime and that the courts must be cautious and circumspect in exercising such powers of discriminatory nature," the ED said in its plea.

"It is for the same reason that the relevant factors for grant of anticipatory bail are materially different from the grant of regular bail. ... special judge has passed the impugned order by ignoring the material on record."

The ED told the High Court that Vadra's questioning is required to unearth the entire source of credit used for the purchase of properties, ascertaining transactions and money laundering.

The ED also said that Vadra's questioning would help the agency to ascertain the role of other key accused persons involved in the commission of offence and the modus operandi.

"Ascertaining the exact source of the tainted money and the end use of such funds involved in the case," the plea read, adding "Confronting him (Vadra) with the voluminous incriminating material for bringing the investigation to a logical conclusion."

The ED also said that there are chances that Vadra may tamper with evidence and influence witnesses in the case, as he is a highly influential person.

"If he is granted blanket protection of bail, there is likelihood that Vadra shall tamper with evidence and would influence witnesses," it said.

The ED said that in spite of being given several opportunities to come out clean about his alleged role in the case, Vadra has remained evasive and maliciously claimed himself to be a victim of political vendetta and that he had made all possible attempts to sensationalise the case.

 

Update: 24 May, 2019

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