Bail Plea by Former Bhushan Steel MD: Supreme Court issues Notice to ED

Singal is challenging his arrest and the Delhi High Court's dismissal of his bail
Supreme Court - DIrectorate of Enforcement - Bhushan Steel limited - Former Bhushan Steel MD - Bail plea - taxscan

The Supreme Court issued a notice to the Directorate of Enforcement ( ED ) Neeraj Singal’s plea, the former Managing Director of Bhushan Steel Limited. Singal is challenging his arrest and dismissal of his bail by the Delhi High Court.

Singal was arrested by the Enforcement Directorate ( ED ) on June 9 of the previous year for his alleged involvement in a bank fraud case and money laundering. The ED alleges that Singal caused a public loss exceeding Rs. 46,000 crores.

According to the ED, Singal, along with other accused individuals and business entities, illicitly acquired loan funds in the name of Bhushan Steel Limited and other group companies and laundered the proceeds through a complex network of over 150 companies under his and Bharat Bhushan’s ownership and control.

Earlier this year, the Delhi High Court dismissed Singal’s plea challenging both his arrest and his bail. The court observed that at the time of Singal’s arrest on June 9, 2023, the oral communication of the grounds for arrest complied with the provisions of Section 19(1) of the PMLA.

During the proceedings yesterday, Senior Advocate Ranjit Kumar, representing Singal, argued that no grounds for the arrest were provided to Singal. Following this, the Supreme Court issued a notice returnable within three weeks.

It is also notable that a single judge Bench of Justice Vikas Mahajan pointed out that the ‘ground of arrest’ presented to Singal at the time of his arrest comprised three pages and was signed by two independent witnesses, thereby lending it credibility.

The court further remarked that for the sake of completeness, it may be mentioned here that the aforesaid question now stands settled by the decision of the Supreme Court in Pankaj Bansal, but the directions contained therein making it mandatory for the arresting officer to communicate the grounds of arrest to the arrestee in writing are prospective in nature.

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