Court grants bail to former Himachal Pradesh CM’s son in money laundering case

New Delhi | A Delhi court today granted bail to former Himachal Pradesh chief minister Virbhadra Singh’s son in a money laundering case.

Special judge Arvind Kumar granted the relief to Vikramaditya Singh on a personal bond of Rs 50,000 and one surety of like amount.

The court has put various conditions on the accused, including that he will not leave the country without its prior permission and he will not try to influence any witness in the case.

Special public prosecutors N K Matta and Nitesh Rana appearing for ED opposed the bail application, saying he may misuse the liberty.

The court has now put up the matter for further hearing on September 19.

The court had on July 24 summoned Vikramaditya Singh and others to appear before it on August 27 in a money laundering case.

The court was considering a charge sheet filed by the Enforcement Directorate (ED) on July 21 against Vikramaditya Singh in the money laundering case, which also involved the former Himachal Pradesh chief minister.

The charge sheet also named the managing director of Tarani Infrastructure, Vakamulla Chandrasekhar, and one Ram Prakash Bhatia as accused.

Both Chandrasekhar and Bhatia are also accused in a CBI case related to the matter, along with Virbhadra Singh, his wife Pratibha Singh and others.

Besides 83-year-old Singh and his 62-year-old wife, the others named in the ED charge sheet are Universal Apple Associate owner Chunni Lal Chauhan, Life Insurance Corporation (LIC) agent Anand Chauhan and two other co-accused–Prem Raj and Lawan Kumar Roach.

The CBI claimed Virbhadra Singh had amassed assets worth around Rs 10 crore which were disproportionate to his total income during his tenure as a Union minister.

The matter was transferred by the Supreme Court to the Delhi High Court which, on April 6, 2016, asked the CBI not to arrest Singh and directed him to join the probe.

On November 5 last year, the apex court transferred Singh’s plea from the Himachal Pradesh High Court to the Delhi High Court, saying it was not expressing any opinion on the merits of the case, but “simply” transferring the petition “in the interest of justice and to save the institution (judiciary) from any embarrassment”.

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