In a major relief for Congress leader D K Shivakumar, Supreme Court on Friday has dismissed ED's plea challenging the Delhi High Court decision granting him bail. On October 25, the ED had moved that apex court filing a Special Leave Petition against the verdict. On October 23, Delhi HC granted bail to DK Shivakumar in the ED case for alleged offenses under the Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA).
DK Shivakumar was in judicial custody in Tihar jail in the ED case, as a trial court had denied him bail in the case. Ruling that the Karnataka Congress leader was not a flight risk, Delhi HC had granted bail to Shivakumar for a bail bond of Rs.25 lakh and the condition that he cannot leave the country without the permission of the court. He was released from jail and was received by hundreds of people at the Bengaluru Airport, who were present with bouquets and garlands on October 26.
After the Karnataka High Court dismissed Shivakumar’s plea for quashing the Enforcement Directorate (ED) summons on August 29, he was interrogated for 4 straight days. Thereafter, he was formally arrested. His custody was extended only till September 17, after which he was sent to Tihar jail. In the meantime, he moved the Delhi High Court seeking bail. On October 15, his judicial custody was extended till October 25. Congress president Sonia Gandhi and senior leader Ambika Soni met him in jail.
The ED case against Shivakumar is based on the charge sheet filed by the Income Tax (I-T) department in 2018. Essentially, the I-T department raided 60 properties of Shivakumar and his associates in August 2017. It unearthed nearly Rs. 8.59 crore of cash at four of his premises in Delhi. The I-T department accused him of regularly transporting unaccounted cash through the Hawala network with the help of his four associates namely, Sachin Narayan, Sunil Kumar Sharma, Anjaneya Hanumanthaiah and N Rajendran. These associates were booked for abetment of false returns and giving false evidence. According to the I-T department, Shivakumar was instrumental in setting up a web of persons in Delhi and Bengaluru to transport and utilize the unaccounted cash. All of them were accused of tax evasion too.