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The Delhi High Court today dismissed the bail application of Delhi based lawyer Rohit Tandon who had been taken into custody after his law firm’s Greater Kailash office was raided post demonetization.
The judgment was pronounced by a single-judge Bench of Justice SP Garg
Approximately Rs.13.6 Crore were seized from Tandon’s office during the raid. The currency seized included both old and new notes.
It was alleged that Tandon had been instrumental in the illegal conversion of demonetised currency worth about Rs.60 Crore in purported connivance with Kolkata-based businessman Paras Mal Lodha and arrested Kotak Mahindra Bank Employee in Delhi Ashish Kumar.
During the proceedings, the Enforcement Directorate through ASG Sanjay Jain and Standing Counsel Amit Mahajan had elaborated on the modus operandi of an arrangement for the exchange of the notes which involved a Chartered Accountant (Kamal Jain) and Ashish Kumar.
“Firstly, the money would be deposited in various bank accounts. Then demand drafts would be issued in the names of fictitious persons. These demand drafts would be kept intact till such time there is enough currency in the market. Afterwards, these demand drafts would be cancelled out and the money would be given back to those who had deposited it.”
The commission for the arrangement was set at 35% and an advance was also given to Ashish Kumar.”
The ED stated that all these activities were carried out under the supervision of Rohit Tandon.
Initially, Senior Advocate Ram Jethmalani, appeared Tandon and submitted that the entire evidence in the matter was documentary and that there is no need for Tandon to be kept in custody.
Subsequently, Senior Advocate Vikas Pahwa argued on behalf of Tandon and stated that during the demonitization period, any amount of money could have been deposited and that would not amount to violation of Prevention of Money Laundering Act. He further submitted that not even a single penny had been withdrawn and hence it cannot be argued that the public at large was cheated.