Delhi

ED opposes Vadra’s plea for anticipatory bail

Robert Vadra

Robert Vadra  

Says he might tamper with evidence and hamper probe

The Enforcement Directorate on Tuesday opposed Robert Vadra’s application for anticipatory bail in a money laundering case stating there was apprehension that he might tamper with evidence and hamper the investigation.

In a reply to the application, the directorate said that if the petitioner was given blanket protection of bail, there were possibilities that he might also influence witnesses.

Was uncooperative

The reply further said that though Mr. Vadra appeared before the investigating agency on a number of occasions for interrogation, he remained evasive and uncooperative.

“The country is at a threshold where the fight against unaccounted/tainted/undisclosed money is at a crucial stage and any let up/liberal approach in that fight would be regressive,” the reply added.

Refering to Mr. Vadra’s allegation that he was a “victim of a political vendetta” and harassment at the hands of the probe agency, the reply said it was unfortunate that he got involved in a political mud-slinging, but his conduct during the course of investigation raised even more apprehensions that he was a key link to unearth the modus operandi adopted by all the accused persons and hence the agency be given a free hand to interrogate him.

Extending interim orders for protection from arrest to Mr. Vadra, Special Judge Arvind Kumar said that he would consider the matter on March 25 after counsel for Mr. Vadra sought time to file reply to the directorate’s plea.

The case

The ED started its investigation into the matter on the basis of digital evidence recovered by the Income Tax (I-T) Department during raids on the premises of Sanjay Bhandari, a fugitive arms dealer. The documents also included e-mails regarding a property in London valued at £1.9 million, the directorate said in an application filed in January for issuance of NBW against personal assistant to Mr. Vadra, Manoj Arora, in the case.

According to the e-mail exchanges between Sumit Chadha, a close relative of Mr. Bhandari, Mr. Vadra and Mr. Arora, Mr. Vadra was beneficially controlling the London property. He was not only renovating this property through Mr. Chadha, but also had arranged funds for the same, the directorate’s application alleged.

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Printable version | May 30, 2020 2:18:05 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/Delhi/ed-opposes-vadras-plea-for-anticipatory-bail/article26585153.ece

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