Bombay High Court exempts Enforcement Directorate director from appearing in court

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Bombay High Court today exempted the Director of Enforcement Directorate (ED) from personally appearing before it on March 12, on an application moved by the department...

Bombay High Court today exempted the Director of Enforcement Directorate (ED) from personally appearing before it on March 12, on an application moved by the department, and summoned the Special Director instead along with a status report mentioning the steps that have been taken in the scam-tainted Adarsh Housing Society probe.

A division bench of Justices P B Majmudar and R D Dhanuka had on February 28, severely castigated the agency for 'serious lapse' on its part and failing to initiate an inquiry against the society members for money laundering while summoning the ED Director on March 12.

The investigating agency later filed an application asking the court to modify its order and permit the special director or joint director to appear before it on a given date.

In the application, ED contended that the agency was not shying away from investigations and that the special director or joint director would appear before the court and inform it about the probe.

'The Special Director is a higher official. We summon him along with a status report detailing what steps have been taken or proposed to be taken by ED against erring persons in connection with money laundering,' Justice Majmudar said today.

Asking the ED to prosecute all those persons against whom evidence is found, the court said 'We want concrete steps to be taken. CBI has found several members have purchased flats through 'benami' transactions. It is ED's job to look into this.' 'A special team has been formed under the supervision of the joint director and the agency is in the process of starting its investigations,' R V Desai, senior counsel for ED, told the court.

'Special team should not mean further delay in the investigation. We cannot betray the faith people have instilled in the court,' Justice Majmudar said.

The court was hearing a bunch of petitions filed by social activists Simpreet Singh and Pravin Wategaonkar seeking court to supervise the probe and ED to initiate inquiry for money laundering offences.