Editorial: True lies

The Delhi High Court has sought response of the Enforcement Directorate (ED) on a petition by a company, which was acquitted in the 2G scam related money laundering case, seeking to release its properties worth Rs 22 crore attached by the agency.

Justice Brijesh Seth issued notice to the ED on the application by Conwood Construction and Developers Pvt Ltd seeking to modify the HC’s 21 March, 2018 order by which status quo was directed to be maintained regarding release of the attached properties.

Conwood was accused of parking the proceeds of alleged crime of Rs 22.56 crore from Dynamix Reality to Kusegaon Fruits and Vegetables Pvt Ltd, whose promoters were also acquitted in the 2G scam cases.

The High Court listed the plea for further hearing and disposal of the plea on 26 August. The plea said the firm was ready to execute an indemnity bond’ of Rs 22.56 crore as a surety and if the appeal by ED is allowed against the acquittal, it will deposit the amount with the agency as equivalent to the properties’ value.

Appearing for the firm, advocate Vijay Aggarwal contended that till now leave to appeal is not granted to ED and CBI, challenging the trial court’s verdict and if its allowed, the appeals will take several years to be decided. If the High Court sets aside the trial court’s decision of acquittal and I lose and the property is confiscated by the government, I am ready to pay the indemnity bond. But till then, I should be allowed to use the property, he submitted.

Representing the ED, Additional Solicitor General Sanjay Jain apprised the court that the same firm had filed a similar application in 2018 and the agency had filed its reply to it. However, if the court directs, he will again file the reply to this plea.

During the hearing, Jain along with advocates Amit Mahajan and N K Matta urged the court to hear the fresh application along with the pending appeals of CBI and ED in the 2G scam case. It will be in the large public interest that the country’s largest trial which was conducted at the public exchequer’s cost be brought to its logical conclusion and the agencies leave to appeal be heard, he submitted.

2G is the most shocking, serious and sensational case the country has ever seen. The special court’s acquittal of the accused has been challenged by both the ED and the CBI. Truth should come out at the earliest.

 

NT Bureau