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Delhi court reserves order on Robert Vadra's plea to travel abroad

The ED opposed the application, saying the medical condition was merely a pretext to go where laundered money is parked

twitter-logo PTI        Last Updated: May 29, 2019  | 22:03 IST
Delhi court reserves order on Robert Vadra's plea to travel abroad

A Delhi court Wednesday reserved for June 3 its order on the application of Robert Vadra, accused in a money laundering case, to travel abroad.

Enforcement Directorate opposed the plea, in which Vadra sought permission to travel to the UK and other countries citing health reasons.

Vadra has told the court that as per Sir Ganga Ram Hospital, he has a "small tumour in the large intestine for the further management of which he can take a second opinion in London if he wishes so".

The ED opposed the application, saying the medical condition was merely a pretext to go where laundered money is parked.

"We got an opinion based on his medical report... It's a routine medical condition, that neither needs to be operated nor does it need medical treatment. It is not the case that the treatment is not available in India. The luxury of having a second opinion in a particular city should not be allowed," Solicitor General Tushar Mehta, appearing for ED, told the court.

"The probe is at a crucial stage. His custodial interrogation is required and he may flee if allowed to go abroad. He is facing serious charges," he said.

The ED also told the court that Vadra was linked to alleged arms dealer Sanjay Bhandari who was in London.

"He may flee and not return. He may influence the probe and destroy the evidence. Bhandari fled from India and is currently in London. He is linked to Vadra in this very case. Vadra May destroy evidence if allowed to go abroad," the agency told the court, adding that Vadra's custodial interrogation was required.

Special Judge Arvind Kumar said he would pass the order on June 3 after hearing arguments from both the parties.

Vadra's counsel, senior advocate KTS Tulsi, told the court that without any summons or warrant he returned to India from London as soon as he came to know about the matter, which shows he was not trying to flee.

According to the application, Vadra is scheduled to go to London, US, Netherlands and Dubai.

Vadra, facing investigation in a case under the Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA), was directed on April 1 not to leave the country without prior permission by a court which had granted him anticipatory bail while imposing several other conditions.

Vadra, the brother-in-law of Congress President Rahul Gandhi, is facing allegations of money laundering in the purchase of a property in London at 12, Bryanston Square, worth 1.9 million pounds.

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