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Aviation scam: Court grants bail to Deepak Talwar’s aide

Last week, the Enforcement Directorate had produced an alleged phone recording between Kapoor and an “economic offender” claiming it to be “material information”. The agency, last week, told the Court that they have transcription of phone recorded conversation of Yasmin Kapoor “with one of the person who is economic offender and the same are very much relevant”.

, ET Bureau|
Last Updated: Feb 03, 2020, 07.46 PM IST
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NEW DELHI: A special PMLA Court has granted anticipatory bail to Yasmin Kapoor, an accused in the aviation scandal along with Deepak Talwar, a corporate lobbyist.

Kapoor had moved the Court last December seeking anticipatory bail apprehending arrest from the Enforcement Directorate (ED) which has booked Kapoor, a close aide of Talwar.

Last week, ED had produced an alleged phone recording between Kapoor and an “economic offender” claiming it to be “material information”.

The agency, last week, told the Court that they have transcription of phone recorded conversation of Yasmin Kapoor “with one of the person who is economic offender and the same are very much relevant”.

Finding little force in the claims made by the agency, the special PMLA Court has found ED’s submission to be “lacking in this regard”. The court has recorded that the name of the “economic offender” with whom Kapoor is alleged to be talking is “not mentioned in the transcription of the alleged phone recording”.

The order reads “As far as transcription of the alleged recording of phone conversation between the accused and the alleged economic offender as stated by the ED, the ED has shown the transcription of the same to the Court and the Court has raised query that if as argued by the ED that the accused is in close relation with such person, do they have any other recording, to which the counsel for ED said, at present no”.

The Court has further held “More so, ED was unable to show how and what is the impact of such conversation in the present case. The name of the alleged economic offender with whom the accused (Kapoor) is alleged to be talking, is also not mentioned in the transcription of the alleged phone recording. Thus, the submission of the ED seems to be lacking in this regard”.

Seeking custodial interrogation of Kapoor, ED had argued that there is “reasonable apprehension of her tampering with the evidence and influencing the witnesses” in the instant case.

On the other hand, Kapoor’s counsel alleged that ED has sought her interrogation “to create false evidence”.

Kapoor is accused of signing bogus cheques for generation and laundering of proceeds of crime as an “active aide” of Deepak Talwar in the aviation scandal.

Allegations against Kapoor are that she is a “beneficiary” who has facilitated and is involved in dishonest diversion of foreign contribution which was entrusted to Talwar’s NGO M/s Advantage India for social corporate responsibilities and thus Kapoor is part of the conspiracy along with Talwar and “many other persons”.

Kapoor’s counsel has denied all the allegations submitting that she has already joined the probe on numerous occasions. Granting bail to Kapoor, the Court recorded that she has already joined the investigation seven times, as conceded by ED.

The Court recorded “till January 18, the ED did not point out that the accused (Kapoor) is not cooperating with the ED or that she is misleading the ED by giving vague and evasive answers to the questions to her and it is only on January 18 and 24 when further arguments on the application were heard that the plea” of Kapoor being non-cooperative and evasive.

Holding that the case against Kapoor is “documentary” in nature, the Court ruled “there is no material to suggest that accused could tamper with the evidence or that influence any witness in the present case as ED has already seized the equipments, documents etc”.

Sources said that the agency is likely to appeal against the said order.

Talwar is accused of receiving several crores as kickbacks for acting as a middleman in paying kickbacks to public servants and politicians to make Air India give up profitmaking routes and timings in favour of local and foreign private airlines.

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