ED gets D K Shivakumar's custody till September 13

Karnataka Congress leader D K Shivakumar leaves after being produced at Rouse Avenue Court in New Delhi, Wednesday, Sept 4, 2019. Shivakumar, arrested in a money laundering case, was sent to the ED custody till September 13 by the court today. (PTI Photo)

 A Delhi court on Wednesday sent Karnataka's senior Congress leader and former Minister D K Shivakumar into the custody of Enforcement Directorate till September 13 in a money laundering case lodged against him.

Special Judge Ajay Kumar Kuhar granted nine days of custodial interrogation of the Karnataka's strongman, though the agency sought 14 days, saying the accused has remained evasive and non-cooperative in four days of questioning at its headquarters here in Delhi.

Arrested a day before, Shivakumar was produced before the court here this afternoon, after taking him from RML Hospital where he spent his night due to medical complications, including varying blood pressure.

After two hours of lengthy arguments from the prosecution and the defence, the court rejected his plea for conditional bail. It allowed him to meet his family members for 15 minutes. However, his request to issue a message to the people of Karnataka not to create any law and order problem was not allowed by the court.

Senior advocate A M Singhvi and Dayan Krishnan, appearing for Shivakumar questioned the ED's plea for 14 days of custody remand. They said the whole case was based upon Income Tax searches which were carried out on in August, 2017, which finally resulted into an I-T complaint on June 13, 2018. This case was subsequently stayed by the High Court and the order of stay remained in operation till date.

Additional Solicitor General K M Nataraj, along with counsel Naveen Kumar Matta, pointed out that the Income Tax investigation and statement of various witness revealed several incriminating evidence against Shivakumar. After summons, he appeared before the ED officers, but he remained evasive and did not reveal the truth.

Singhvi cited Article 20 of the Constitution to contend that the accused cannot be made to make a self-incriminating statement against himself.

The ED's counsel contended that he was arrested for the offence of money laundering, which was an independent offence under the PMLA Act. The contention that it was only the I-T offences was not correct and the offence of criminal conspiracy was also attracted, they said.

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