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Excise Case: Delhi HC notice to ED on Abhishek Boinpally bail plea

New Delhi: The Delhi High Court on Monday issued notice to Enforcement Directorate (ED) on Hyderabad based Businessman Abhishek Boinpally's bail plea in a money laundering case related to the alleged Delhi excise scam.
The Bench of Justice Dinesh Kumar Sharma on Monday also sought response of ED on Boinpally's plea challenging his arrest in the money laundering case. He has also challenged the remand and the entire process under the PMLA which led to his arrest. Senior Advocate Vikram Chaudhary appeared for him in Delhi High Court.
On February 16, 2023, the Rouse Avenue Court rejected the bail petitions of five accused including Abhishek Boinpally said, the money laundering probe emerging out of the Delhi Government's New Excise policy (Now scraped) 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 till 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 piecemeal complaints or chargesheets as the investigation qua all of them stands already completed and even specific submissions to this effect are found made in the said complaints, though some further investigation regarding role of other persons involved in the commission of alleged offences and to trace out the complete trail of ill-gotten money is still kept pending, said the 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 favours were extended to licence holders, the licence fee was waived or reduced and the L-1 licence 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. (ANI)

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