MUMBAI: The Bombay High Court on Thursday rejected the petition filed by Shiv Sena leader and former MP Anandrao Adsul challenging a case registered by the Enforcement Directorate (ED) against him in connection with an alleged Rs 980 crore fraud at the City Co-operative Bank.
A division bench of Justices Nitin Jamdar and Sarang Kotwal, while dismissing the petition filed by Adsul, said he was at liberty to approach the special court and seek anticipatory bail if he is apprehending arrest.
Adsul had moved the high court earlier this month challenging the case and the summons issued by the ED directing him to appear before it for questioning.
Adsul’s counsel Abhinav Chandrachud told the court that the proceedings initiated by the ED were at the instance of the political rivals with the support of the ruling party at the Centre (BJP).
“Proceedings initiated by ED against Adsul clearly smack of political vendetta being settled through enforcement agencies which are armed with powers of civil court during investigation and have been elevated to the status of Court,” the Sena leader’s plea said.
Chandrachud told the court that the proceedings before the ED had been initiated based on the complaint of Ravi Rana, husband of Amravati Lok Sabha member Navneet Kaur Rana.
The plea added that Adsul had earlier filed a petition against Navneet Kaur Rana’s caste certificate and the high court had earlier this year cancelled the caste certificate.
It said that Adsul was the original complainant in the case registered by the city police’s Economic Offences Wing (EOW) in the case.
The ED case against Adsul pertains to an alleged Rs 980 crore worth financial irregularities in the City Cooperative Bank.
Adsul was the former chairman of the bank.
The money laundering case is based on a first information report (FIR) of the Mumbai police’s EOW into the alleged irregularities in the disbursement of loan funds and other financial transactions in the bank.