The Bombay High Court on Tuesday denied bail to NCP leader and Maharashtra Cabinet Minister Nawab Malik in a money laundering case. Malik was arrested by the Enforcement Directorate (ED) for alleged money laundering and “active involvement in terror funding” in connection with a 1999 land deal which also involved underworld don Dawood Ibrahim’s sister Haseena Parkar.
A division bench of Justices Prasanna B Varale and Shriram M Modak on March 11 reserved the interim order in Malik’s plea.
“As certain debatable issues are raised, they require to be heard at length. Considering the grounds assigned by us we are no inclined to allow the prayers in the interim application. Applications rejected.”
The plea filed by Malik claimed that his arrest was illegal and done with “political vendetta” and it also violated the Criminal Procedure Code (CrPC).
Nawab Malik sought to quash the ECIR filed against him. His counsel argued that “Habeas corpus is the Brahmashirsha astra of the judiciary to protect personal liberty. It’s the most powerful weapon”. On the other hand, Additional Solicitor General Anil Singh, representing ED said that an ECIR is an internal document unlike an FIR and it couldn’t be quashed.
The agency denied picking up Malik from his house forcefully. Malik was served with summons before he was arrested on February 23. His statement was recorded after he “voluntarily” visited the ED office accompanied by his son.
Malik was found to be guilty of an offence punishable under the provisions of Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA), 2002 according to an arrest order issued by ED Assistant Director Niraj Kumar.
The National Investigation Agency (NIA) filed an FIR against the company of Dawood Ibrahim, D Company. Based on the FIR registered, the Enforcement Directorate filed a case under the PMLA and Unlawful Prevention Act (UAPA).
According to the case filed by the ED, the Kurla property deal of Malik and Dawood involves a ₹80 lakh payment by Nawab Malik to Haseena Parkar, sister of the underworld don Dawood Ibrahim, out of this ₹80 lakh, around ₹25 lakh was paid through a cheque and ₹55 lakh in cash to acquire a 3 acre land in Kurla.
The land belonged to one Munira Plumber and was bought by Malik through a forged power of attorney. All the power to sell the land was given to Parkar’s driver and bodyguard Salim Patel claimed ED.