Sources said it would be a significant hearing as the court has summoned former telecom minister A. Raja, DMK chief M.Karunanidhi’s daughter Kanimozhi and other accused in the case. DMK supremo M.Karunanidhi’s wife Dayalu Ammal, who was also summoned by the court, was recently hospitalised in a private hospital in Chennai.
“The court has already taken cognisance in the matter of money laundering case and detailed arguments will further continue,” said an Enforcement Directorate (ED) official. After taking cognisance of the Enforcement Directorate’s chargesheet filed in a money laundering case related to the 2G scam, a special court had summoned A.Raja, Kanimozhi and others on May 26.
Others named in the ED chargesheet include DB Realty’s Shahid Usman Balwa, Vinod K.Goenka, Asif Balwa, Rajiv B. Agarwal, Cineyug Films’ Karim Morani, Kalaignar TV MD Sharad Kumar and its director P. Amritham.
The ED chargesheet is at variance with that of CBI which had made Dayalu Ammal and Amritham prosecution witnesses. Agency sources said investigation into the case was still on and more people could be chargesheeted if evidence would be found against them.
The special court is hearing all cases related to the alleged wrongdoing in the allotment of 2G specturm and licences in 2008, when Raja of the DMK was communications minister.
Raja had to resign in 2010 after the 2G scandal surfaced. Hearing of the case will take place probably during morning hours and ED officials said there will be further argument in the case on the bail applications.
The money laundering case pertains to the alleged illegal routing of Rs.200 crore to DMK family-run Kalaignar TV. The ED has alleged Swan Telecom Pvt Ltd paid a bribe of Rs.200 crore to Kalaignar TV in lieu of illegal grant of Unified Access Service (UAS) licence to the company.
Sources claimed there are enough evidences with regard to the channelling of Rs.200 crore to Kalaignar TV through a circuitous route. Moreover, relying on the Jharkhand High Court order the agency has also decided to slap the charge of criminal proceeds by the act of money laundering against the accused, including the duo, under the PMLA.
An Enforcement Directorate official claimed that it would not be easy for the accused to get bail as under the Act, bail can be granted only if the judge is satisfied that the accused is not guilty of the offence.
According to Section 45 (1)(b)(ii) of PMLA, no person accused under the Act shall be released on bail unless “where the public prosecutor opposes the application (for bail), the court is satisfied that there are reasonable grounds for believing that he is not guilty of such offence and that he is not likely to commit any offence while on bail”.
Kanimozhi has already spent 193 days in jail after she was sent to judicial custody in May 2011 in connection with the case then being investigated by CBI under Prevention of Corruption Act and various sections of Indian Penal Code. Raja had spent 15 months in jail before he was released in May 2012.