The Enforcement Directorate (ED) on Thursday moved a plea in the Delhi High Court challenging the grant of bail to Ratul Puri by a special CBI court in a money laundering case.
A special CBI court had granted bail to Puri, who is the nephew of Madhya Pradesh CM Kamal Nath on a bail bond of Rs 5 lakh and two sureties of like amount.
While issuing the bail, the Special CBI judge Arvind Kumar had told Puri not to temper with evidence and also he should not make contact with or influence any witness pertaining to the case.
Judge had further directed Puri to join the probe and extend cooperation to the investigating officer.
Puri is facing investigation by the ED for allegedly being involved in money laundering through his companies in the AgustaWestland chopper scam. The investigating agency has alleged that accounts related with firms possessed and governed by Ratul Puri were used to collect kickbacks and defraud money in AgustaWestland the deal.
The investigating agency has recently filed a supplementary prosecution complaint against Puri and Jaspreet Ahuja.
Puri was arrested by on August 18 this year after the investigating agency took cognizance of the disclosures made by lobbyist Rajiv Saxena, also an accused in the case.
Saxena had turned approver in the case after he was extradited from the United Arab Emirates and put into the detention by the agency.
The case pertains to alleged irregularities in the purchase of 12 VVIP choppers from Italy-based Finmeccanica’s British subsidiary AgustaWestland. The deal was scrapped by the NDA government in 2014 over the alleged breach of contractual obligations and charges of payment of kickbacks for securing the deal.
Puri is the Chairman of the Board of Directors of Hindustan Powerprojects, one of India’s leading power players in the energy sector.
—India Legal Bureau