Delhi High Court reserves order on plea by Rujira Banerjee in money laundering case

The petition has claimed that an ED complaint has been filed to harass and cause prejudice to Rujira Banerjee and her family.

Published: 12th February 2022 12:40 AM  |   Last Updated: 12th February 2022 12:40 AM   |  A+A-

Delhi High Court

Delhi High Court (File Photo | Shekhar Yadav, EPS)

By PTI

NEW DELHI: The Delhi High Court Friday reserved order on a plea by TMC MP Abhishek Banerjee's wife Rujira Banerjee concerning a money laundering case linked to an alleged coal scam in West Bengal.

Justice Rajnish Bhatnagar said he would pass the order in the petition which has challenged the Enforcement Directorate's complaint filed in the case against the petitioner and the trial court order taking cognizance of that complaint and the subsequent issuance of summons for physical appearance.

On February 4, the judge had also reserved a verdict on the petition by Abhishek Banerjee and Rujira Banerjee against the ED summons issued to them for appearance here in connection with the case.

In the present case, Rujira, represented by senior advocate Kapil Sibal, has contended that the Enforcement Directorate (ED)'s complaint against her is arbitrary, false, vexatious and an abuse of the process of law.

The petition was opposed by lawyer Amit Mahajan who appeared on behalf of the investigating agency.

The petition has claimed that an ED complaint has been filed to harass and cause prejudice to Rujira and her family.

"A bare perusal of the Impugned Complaint confirms that the Respondent Agency (ED) falsely averred that Petitioner had not complied with its illegal summonses (issued by ED)...Owing to the fact that she is a mother of two (2) young children and a resident of Kolkata, the Petitioner has repeatedly requested that she be examined at her residence in Kolkata.

"The fact that the Petitioner was in constant dialogue with the Respondent in relation to the aforementioned summons clearly shows that there was no intention on the part of the Petitioner to disobey the same," the petition stated.

It has further argued that the trial court took cognizance and issued summons on the complaint in a mechanical manner and without application of mind.

Last year, the court had exempted her physical appearance in the matter before the trial court for the time being.

Earlier, after she had appeared virtually in relation to the complaint filed by ED, Chief Metropolitan Magistrate Pankaj Sharma had directed her physical presence on October 12, 2021.

Abhishek Banerjee, the 33-year-old MP, who is the nephew of West Bengal Chief Minister Mamta Banerjee, represents the Diamond Harbour seat in Lok Sabha and is the national general secretary of the Trinamool Congress (TMC).

The ED lodged a case under the provisions of the Prevention of Money Laundering Act on the basis of a November 2020 FIR registered by the CBI that alleged a multi-crore coal pilferage scam related to Eastern Coalfields Ltd mines in the state's Kunustoria and Kajora areas in and around Asansol.

Local coal operative Anup Majhi alias Lala is alleged to be the prime suspect in the case.

The ED had earlier claimed that Abhishek Banerjee was a beneficiary of funds obtained from this illegal trade.

He has denied all charges.



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