NEW DELHI: The Delhi High Court Thursday sought to know the Centre’s stand on a plea seeking a probe by NIA against several persons, including former DHFL promoters Kapil and Dheeraj Wadhawan facing prosecution in a multi-crore bank loan scam case, for allegedly indulging in terror funding.
The petition claimed the Enforcement Directorate (ED) has apparently “unearthed multiple links indicating that the accused persons have funded the Iqbal Mirchi-Dawood Ibrahim terrorist gang, while (allegedly) criminally misappropriating the public money through banks”.
“You seek instructions on this,” a bench of Chief Justice Satish Chandra Sharma and Justice Subramonium Prasad told central government standing counsel Anurag Ahluwalia.
The court granted four weeks time to the Centre’s counsel to get instructions in the matter and listed it for further hearing on February 22.
Petitioner Santosh Kumar Singh, an ex-army personnel, sought direction to the Centre and the NIA to order investigation by the agency against several persons on the basis of his May 9 representation filed before them pertaining to commission of the alleged offences of terror funding.
The petitioner, represented through advocate Prashant Bhushan, said that according to information that has come out in public domain about the ongoing ED investigation against late gangster Mirchi and Kapil Wadhawan, former chairman and managing director of the erstwhile management of debt-laden Dewan Housing Finance (DHFL), it appears that the accused persons have been involved in directly and indirectly, funding Mirchi and Ibrahim.
The petition said that on May 9, the petitioner filed a complaint “regarding the offences against the State and terror funding as allegedly committed and commissioned by the accused persons and their companies thereof being Kapil Wadhawan, Dheeraj Wadhawan…”
The petition said Section 6 of the NIA Act provides for investigation of scheduled offences by the agency either on receipt of information by a police station or suo motu if the central government is of the opinion that a scheduled offence has been committed which is required to be investigated under the NIA Act.
“As the ingredients of Section 17 (punishment for raising funds for terrorist act) of the UAPA are satisfied, therefore, NIA has the proper jurisdiction to investigate the instant case against the accused persons named in the petitioner’s representation, dated May 9, 2022, in accordance with sections 6 and 8 of the National Investigation Agency Act, 2008,” it said.
The plea claimed that despite the overwhelming incriminating materials being revealed during the investigation by ED and the petitioner’s representation, the probe of the instant case has still not been handed over to NIA, in addition to the ongoing investigations by the different investigative agencies.
According to the CBI FIR based on a complaint made by Union Bank of India, DHFL, the then CMD Kapil Wadhawan, the then director Dheeraj Wadhawan and other accused persons allegedly entered into a criminal conspiracy to cheat the consortium of 17 banks led by Union Bank of India and in pursuance of the said criminal conspiracy the accused and others induced the consortium banks to sanction huge loans aggregating to Rs 42,871.42 crore.
Much of that amount was allegedly siphoned off and misappropriated by alleged falsification of the books of the DHFL and dishonest default in repayment of the legitimate dues of the said consortium banks, the CBI has claimed.
The complainant has alleged that a wrongful loss of Rs 34,615 crore was caused to the consortium banks in as much as such was the quantification of the outstanding dues as on July 31, 2020. (PTI)