Delhi minister Satyendar Jain's judicial custody extended by 14 days
Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) leader and Delhi minister Satyendar Jain's judicial custody was extended by another 14 days by a Delhi court on Monday. The Enforcement Directorate (ED) arrested him last month in an alleged money laundering case. Meanwhile, Jain's bail hearing is scheduled for Tuesday. The ED responded to his bail application, requesting a day's time from the court to argue the case.
- The latest development comes as the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and the AAP are embroiled in a political feud over the Delhi minister's arrest.
- On Thursday, the court extended the ED custody of Jain till Monday (June 13).
- Meanwhile, last Monday, the ED recovered over Rs. 2 crore in cash and jewelry from Jain's aides in the alleged corruption case against him.
On May 30, the ED arrested the AAP leader under the criminal provisions of the Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA). On Thursday, the ED sought to extend his custody as they needed to interrogate him further. However, advocate Kapil Sibal, appearing for Jain, argued there was no ground to extend his custody as Jain was already in the ED's custody for 10 days.
Jain and his family are alleged to have formed four fake companies to launder Rs. 11.78 crore in 2011-12 and Rs. 4.63 crore in 2015-16. But the AAP has claimed that a fake case has been running against Jain for eight years.
The ED raids took place last Monday at the residences of Jain and his associates as a "follow-up" to the aforementioned case. The ED recovered over Rs. 2 crore in cash and jewelry during the raids. Reportedly, Rs. 2.23 crore was recovered from Ram Prakash Jeweller and Rs. 41.5 lakh—including Rs. 20 lakh in cash and 133 gold coins—was recovered from one Vaibhav Jain.
Jain had allegedly purchased or floated several shell companies in Delhi and also laundered black money worth Rs. 16.39 crore via 54 shell companies of three Kolkata-based hawala operators. Akinchan Developers Private Limited, Indo Metal Impex Private Limited, Paryas Infosolutions Private Limited, Manglayatan Projects Private Limited, and JJ Ideal Estate Private Limited are among some companies in which Jain allegedly owned shares.
In April, the ED stated, "During 2015-16...companies beneficially owned and controlled by [Jain] received accommodation entries to the tune of Rs. 4.81 crore from shell companies against cash transferred to Kolkata-based entry operators through hawala route." "These amounts were utilized for direct purchase of land or for the repayment of loan taken for purchase of agricultural land in and around Delhi (sic)," it added.
On the other hand, Delhi CM and AAP chief Arvind Kejriwal called the case against Jain "completely fraud." "I have personally studied this case, it is completely fraud. We neither tolerate corruption nor we do corruption. We have a very honest government. He has been targeted because of political reasons," Kejriwal said. However, the CM also said he had complete faith in the judiciary.
"I would request [PM Modi] to put us all together in jail rather than picking us one by one, and use all central agencies to probe us. Ask all your agencies to take out investigations against all of us at once," CM Kejriwal further stated.