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Business India

Deepak Talwar case; ED attaches Rs 120 cr Delhi hotel

The Enforcement Directorate (ED) on Saturday said it has provisionally attached Holiday Inn hotel worth Rs 120 crore in connection with a money laundering case against aviation lobbyist Deepak Talwar.

The hotel is located at Aerocity in Delhi and valued at around Rs 120.20 crore, it said.

Investigation against Talwar was initiated under the Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA) in August 2017 on the basis of an FIR registered by the Central Bureau of Investigation against officials of the Civil Aviation Ministry, National Aviation Co of India Ltd, Air India and unknown private persons, the ED said in a statement.

“It has been revealed that Deepak Talwar illegally engaged in liasoning/lobbying with politicians, ministers, other public servants and officials of Ministry of Civil Aviation for airlines such as Emirates, Air Arabia and Qatar Airways for securing undue benefits for them.

“He illegally managed to secure favourable traffic rights for these airlines during 2008-09 at the cost of national carrier Air India,” the investigative agency said.

Investigations revealed that in lieu of securing favourable traffic rights, these airlines made payments to the tune of Rs 272 crore to Talwar in 2008-09, it added.

The ED alleged that Talwar created a web of entities owned by him and his family members in India and international offshore havens to launder the proceeds of crime.

“Part of these payments were made to a bank account in Bank of Singapore, belonging to a company – M/s Asiafield Ltd – registered in the British Virgin Islands and beneficially owned by Deepak Talwar.

“These proceeds of crime were layered through a series of international money transfers, to finally integrate in India in M/s Wave Hospitality Pvt Ltd, a company beneficially owned and controlled by Deepak Talwar and his family members in the name of his son Aditya Talwar,” it said.

“These proceeds of crime were then utilized in the construction of Holiday Inn in Aerocity, New Delhi,” it added.

Talwar fled the country in 2017 to avoid investigation. He was deported by immigration authority of Dubai on January 31 and arrested under PMLA. He is now in judicial custody.

The agency said that further investigation was in progress.

IANS

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India

Court allows Enforcement Directorate (ED) to quiz Deepak Talwar in jail

A Delhi court on Friday allowed the Enforcement Directorate (ED) to question corporate lobbyist Deepak Talwar in judicial custody in a case related to the purchase of 43 aircraft by Indian Airlines in 2005.

ED’s Special Public Prosecutors D.P. Singh and Nitesh Rana told Special Judge Santosh Snehi Mann that the interrogation of Talwar is necessary to ascertain the money trail.

ED has registered a case related to purchase of aircraft by Indian Airlines from Airbus Industrie, France, in 2005.

Meanwhile, the prosecutors have withdrawn the plea seeking to issue a production warrant against Talwar, who is in judicial custody in another money laundering case related to his suspected role in the irregular seat sharing on Air India’s profitable routes with some international airlines.

The ED is also probing various other cases related to money laundering against Talwar who was deported from the United Arab Emirates (UAE) on January 30.

IANS

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India

Court extends Deepak Talwar’s Enforcement Directorate custody

A Delhi court on Tuesday allowed the Enforcement Directorate (ED) to quiz corporate lobbyist Deepak Talwar for two more days in a money laundering case.

Special Judge Bharat Parashar extended Talwar’s ED custody after the probe agency told him that he is required to be confronted with two people in connection with the case.

Talwar was presented before the court on expiry of his ED custody.

Talwar was deported from the United Arab Emirates (UAE) on January 30. He was presented before a court on January 31 which sent him to seven days ED custody.

The ED said Rs 200 crore was allegedly received in one of the bank accounts of a company of Talwar in Singapore and that he is being probed for his suspected role in the irregular seat sharing on Air India’s profitable routes with some international airlines.

Talwar had fled to Dubai after the Indian agencies started probing his role in concealing the income of over Rs 1,000 crore as well as facilitating aviation contracts during the UPA regime.

He is accused of brokering aviation sector deals, getting government approval for foreign companies, and securing favours for clients due to his ties with UPA functionaries.

IANS

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India

ED response sought in lobbyist Deepak Talwar case

The Enforcement Directorate (ED) was on Tuesday asked by the Delhi High Court for a response on a plea by alleged lobbyist Deepak Talwar challenging his detention here by agencies after he was deported to India from the UAE last week.

A bench of Justices Siddharth Mridul and Sangita Dhingra Sehgal issued notice to the ED and directed it to file a response to the petition by February 11. The court listed the matter for further hearing on February 12.

Senior advocate Mukul Rohatgi, appearing for Talwar, submitted that he was abducted from Dubai and handed over to Indian authorities and there was no extradition treaty with the UAE.

ED counsel Amit Mahajan sought time to respond to the plea.

Talwar, who is in ED custody, was deported from Dubai on January 30 and was arrested by the agency after landing here.

Talwar has been accused by the ED of acting as a middleman in negotiations to favour foreign private airlines in the matter of seat-sharing on Air India’s profitable routes.

ED wants to question Talwar to get the names of officials of the Ministry of Civil Aviation, National Aviation Co of India Ltd and Air India, who favoured foreign airlines, including Qatar Airways, Emirates and Air Arabia.

He has been charged with criminal conspiracy, forgery and under various other sections of the FCRA for allegedly diverting Rs 90.72 crore worth of foreign funds meant for ambulances and other articles received by his NGO from Europe’s leading missile manufacturing company.

His role in some aviation deals during the previous Congress-led United Progressive Alliance (UPA) regime is under the scanner as well.

Talwar was booked by the ED and the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) in criminal cases of corruption while the Income Tax Department charged him with tax evasion.

ED response sought in lobbyist Deepak Talwar case

IANS