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Excise Case: Delhi HC notice to ED on Manish Sisodia's regular, interim bail plea

New Delhi: The Delhi High Court on Thursday issued notice to Enforcement Directorate (ED) on Delhi's former deputy chief minister Manish Sisodia's bail petition in a money laundering case in connection with an alleged excise scam.

Sisodia has moved regular and interim bail pleas both in the high court. He has moved interim bail on the basis of his wife's illness and seeks six weeks' bail in that. The Bench of Justice Dinesh Kumar Sharma on Thursday directed ED to file a joint reply within a week, listed on May 11. Court records there's a plea for interim bail also on the grounds of illness of his wife.
Earlier Trial Court dismissed the bail plea of Manish Sisodia in money laundering being investigated by the ED.

The Rouse Avenue Court last week dismissed the bail plea of Manish Sisodia in a money laundering case related to the Excise scam stating that "this case of economic offences having serious repercussions upon the general public and society at large as the evidence collected during investigation speaks volumes of his involvement in the commission of the said offence"
Court also noted that some evidence is also alleged to have surfaced during the investigation to show that some part of the kickback or bribe amount received from South lobby was spent or utilized in connection with the election campaign of the AAP in Goa and some cash payments through hawala channels are alleged to have been sent to Goa for bearing the said expenses and even some fake invoices are alleged to have been created as a cover-up for the cash amounts transferred through hawala channels.

It is stated that the above cash transfers were made as per instructions of the coaccused Vijay Nair, who was the representative of the applicant and the AAP and also the Media Incharge of AAP and looking after the work related to said elections and he also roped in a company named M/S Chariot Productions Media Pvt. Ltd. owned by the coaccused Rajesh Joshi to do the election-related advertising work and other jobs for the party during said elections, noted the court.

Thus, in view of the above background, the serious nature of the allegations made and the role played by the applicant in the above criminal conspiracy, his connection with the activities relating to the generation or acquisition and use etc. of the above proceeds of crime within the meaning of Section 3 of the PMLA and the oral and documentary evidence collected in support of the same and as placed for the perusal of the court, this court is of the considered opinion that even if the rigours and restrictions contained U/S 45 of the PMLA are viewed and construed reasonably, the prosecution has still been able to show a genuine and prima facie case for the involvement of the applicant in the commission of the alleged offence of money laundering.

The Enforcement Directorate (ED) on March 9 arrested former Delhi deputy chief minister Manish Sisodia in the liquor policy case, after hours of questioning at Tihar Jail.
Sisodia was arrested by the CBI earlier in its ongoing investigation of a case related to alleged irregularities in the framing and implementation of the excise policy of the National Capital Territory of Delhi (GNCTD). (ANI)

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