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NEW DELHI: Enforcement Directorate on Wednesday filed another application before a court seeking action against chief minister Arvind Kejriwal under IPC’s Section 174 for avoiding five summonses issued to him in a money laundering probe related to the alleged Delhi liquor scam.
Additional chief metropolitan magistrate Divya Malhotra has listed the matter for hearing on Thursday. Malhotra is also adjudicating ED’s previous application filed against Kejriwal where the agency had sought action against him for disobeying three of its summonses. The court has asked Delhi CM to appear in the court on March 16.
During the last hearing against Kejriwal on February 7, Malhotra had said that “in view of the discussion, the complaint filed by the complainant (ED) accompanied by the supporting documents discloses all the necessary ingredients constituting the offence punishable under Section 174 of IPC”. The judge had noted that provisions of PMLA enable prosecution under Section 174 of IPC for disobedience of any direction issued by ED. The persons summoned by the agency are bound to comply with its order, the judge had said.
Under Section 174 of IPC, the court can summon someone evading investigation and enforce his presence before the investigative agency. If the court is satisfied that the accused is guilty of wilful avoidance, it may order imprisonment for one month, or a fine of Rs 500, or both for each violation. In case of non-compliance with its order, the court may order “simple imprisonment for a term which may extend up to six months,” or fine of Rs 1,000 or both.
As reported by TOI on Wednesday, a Jharkhand court has held former CM Hemant Soren guilty under Section 174 of IPC for defying seven summonses issued by the probe agency and directed him to appear in the case before the court on April 3 when it will deliver its verdict. The ruling exposes Soren, already in judicial custody, to the risk of jail terms, one month each for the summonses he ignored.
Responding to the development, AAP said several court rulings had repeatedly held that ED must inform in what capacity a person was being summoned. “Unfortunately, the Central govt refuses to follow court orders and considers itself above the law,” it said.
Taking to X, Kejriwal said: “This is the truth of ED and Modi govt. After ED raids, the question that is asked is: where will you go? BJP or jail? Those who refuse to go to BJP are sent to jail. If Satyendar Jain, Manish Sisodia and Sanjay Singh join BJP, they will get bail tomorrow itself. It is not that these three have committed any crime, they have just refused to join BJP. If I join BJP today, I will also stop getting summonses from ED. Prime Minister, be afraid of Go… Time is very powerful.”


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