Wednesday, July 27, 2022

ED's rights upheld; Supreme Court seals the provisions of 'PMLA'

New Delhi : The Supreme Court on Wednesday upheld the powers of the Enforcement Directorate (ED) to take action under the Prevention of Financial Misappropriation Act (PMLA). Justice Ajay dismissed the petition against some provisions of the Act while keeping the ED’s powers of arrest, seizure of assets, raids etc. in case of financial misappropriation. Khanwilkar, Justice Dinesh Maheshwari and Justice C. T. Ravikumar’s bench held a joint hearing and passed the verdict on Wednesday

The Supreme Court rejected the challenge to the constitutional validity of Section 19 (Procedure of Arrest) of the ‘PMLA’ Act. The court also held that Section 5 of the Act dealing with confiscation was constitutionally valid

When an arrested person is produced before a special court, that court can examine the relevant records submitted by the ‘ED’. According to the Prevention of Financial Misconduct Act, the court will decide whether to continue the custody of the concerned person or not. The issue of detention is also taken into consideration. Section 45 deals with the cognizable and non-bailable aspects of offences, while ‘Section 436A’ of the Indian Penal Code deals with the period for which a raw prisoner can be detained.

The Supreme Court heard arguments on Article 19 relating to the power-to-arrest aspects of the PMLA and Article 3 defining the offense in cases of financial misappropriation. Stating that financial misappropriation is dangerous to the economy, the court has commented in depth on the scope of this crime in its 545 page verdict.

It is enough to state the reason for the arrest

It is not mandatory to file an Enforcement Case Information Report (ECIR) to the concerned person in every case. ‘ECIR’ of ‘ED’ is not equivalent to Preliminary Investigation Report (FIR) of Police. Therefore, the Supreme Court clarified that even if the ED tells the reason for the action to the concerned person while arresting, it is sufficient

27x increase in impressions

The Directorate of Enforcement conducted 112 raids across the country between 2004 and 2014, but the number rose to 3,010 between 2014 and 2022, the government itself informed the Rajya Sabha on Tuesday. It has increased by 27 times

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