Not sum­moned, but Pawar to visit ED of­fice on Fri­day

CAN’T IG­NORE THE IN­TER­EST OF SO­CI­ETY, SAYS COURT, DE­NIES BAIL TO CONG’S DKS | 11 ‘Will Not Bow Be­fore Delhi Throne’

The Times of India (New Delhi edition) - - Times Nation - Pra­fulla.Marpak­war @times­group.com THE TIMES OF IN­DIA, NEW DELHI

Mum­bai: A day after the En­force­ment Direc­torate (ED) reg­is­tered a crim­i­nal case against him un­der the Pre­ven­tion of Money Laun­der­ing Act (PMLA), NCP pres­i­dent Sharad Pawar on Wednes­day said he would present him­self be­fore the ED of­fice on Fri­day.

Along with Pawar, his nephew and for­mer deputy CM Ajit Pawar and ex-Shiv Sena MP Anan­drao Ad­sul are among the ac­cused in the al­leged Rs 25,000 crore Ma­ha­rash­tra State Co­op­er­a­tive Bank em­bez­zle­ment case.

If Pawar does go to the ED of­fice on Fri­day, it will be the first time in re­cent times that a high-pro­file ac­cused would be vis­it­ing the agency’s of­fice with­out be­ing sum­moned.

“I have been told the ED has reg­is­tered a crim­i­nal case against me. Since for the en­tire month I will be out of Mum­bai for the assem­bly poll cam­paign and it should not hap­pen that ED’s love let­ter is not re­ceived by me, I have de­cided to present my­self on Septem­ber 27 so that no in­con­ve­nience is caused to in­ves­ti­gat­ing of­fi­cials. I will try to un­der­stand the charges against me and will co­op­er­ate with the ED,” Pawar said.

How­ever, Pawar ques­tioned the tim­ing of the move. “I am sur­prised over the tim­ing, par­tic­u­larly in view of the (Oc­to­ber 21) assem­bly elec­tions. I will pro­vide what­ever in­for­ma­tion is sought by ED, but I will not bow down be­fore the Delhi throne,” he said. CM Deven­dra Fad­navis said that the ED had reg­is­tered the case on the ba­sis of Bom­bay HC di­rec­tives and that it would be wrong to at­tribute po­lit­i­cal mo­tives.

The HC had on Au­gust 22 asked the Eco­nomic Of­fences Wing to ini­ti­ate crim­i­nal pro­ceed­ings against Ajit Pawar and oth­ers in the case in which the ac­cused, who granted loans to co­op­er­a­tive sugar fac­to­ries, were al­legedly com­plicit in caus­ing losses to the bank. It is al­leged that in most cases, loans were given il­le­gally at the be­hest of Sharad Pawar.

Pawar said he was not even re­motely as­so­ci­ated with the loan dis­burse­ment process, nor was he on the MSC bank’s board of di­rec­tors.

Pawar’s home­town shuts down in protest:

Pawar’s home­town Bara­mati ob­served a to­tal bandh on Wednes­day in protest against the FIR. Apart from Bara­mati, NCP work­ers held protests across Pune district. Protests were also held in Au­rangabad, Nashik and Kol­ha­pur.

Full re­port on www.toi.in

Amit Ruke

An NCP rally in Pune to protest ED ac­tion against Sharad Pawar

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