Delhi HC issues notice to ED on Abhishek Boinpally bail plea in Excise Scam

The Delhi HC on Monday issued a notice to Enforcement Directorate (ED) on Hyderabad-based Businessman Abhishek Boinpally’s bail plea in money laundering case belong to the alleged Delhi excise scam.

On Monday Judge Dinesh Kumar Sharma’s Bench also requested the ED to respond on Boinpally’s appeal of his arrest in the money laundering case. Additionally, he has challenged his arrest’s remand and the entire PMLA process. Vikram Chaudhary, a senior attorney represented him before Delhi High Court.

On 16 February 2023, the Rouse Avenue Court rejected the bail petitions of five accused including Abhishek Boinpally said that the money laundering probe emerging out of the Delhi Government’s New Excise policy and opined, “none of the accused deserves to be released on bail in this case at this stage of proceedings as the allegations made against them are quite serious”.

The trial court also observed that the accused persons do not even satisfy the triple test as laid down in the case of P Chidambaram Vs. Directorate of Enforcement being relied upon by the Defence Counsels.

However, in the considered opinion of this court, the oral and documentary evidence which has already been discussed and further has been placed on record along with the two prosecution complaints filed before this court by the ED to date, nowhere warrants such an inference to be drawn therefrom and thus, the prosecution complaints filed against the accused persons by the ED cannot be held to be complaints or chargesheets as the investigation qua all of them stands already completed, said trial court in order.

The Enforcement Directorate in its second chargesheet in the Liquor excise policy case has 12 accused names are mentioned in the chargesheet in total – 5 arrested persons (Vijay Nair, Sharath Reddy, Binoy Babu, Abhishek Boinpally, Amit Arora) and 7 companies. Further investigation is continuing to investigate the role of ECIR named accused and other persons on various allegations said the ED.

Abhishek Boinpally along with Aam Aadmi Party’s Vijay Nair was granted bail by the trial Court in CBI Case earlier. Later the order was challenged by the CBI in Delhi High Court, which is presently being examined by Delhi High Court.

In the case, the ED and the CBI had alleged that irregularities were committed while modifying the Excise Policy, undue favors were extended to license holders, the license fee was waived or reduced and the L-1 license was extended without the competent authority’s approval. The beneficiaries diverted “illegal” gains to the accused officials and made false entries in their books of account to evade detection.
The FIR in the case was instituted on a reference from the Union Home Ministry following a recommendation from Delhi Lieutenant-Governor Vinai Kumar Saxena.

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