ED files caveat in SC on K Kavitha’s plea challenging summons against her

19 March, 2023 | Pragati Singh

ED National

aoman cannot be called for interrogation before the ED in office and her questioning should take place at her house.

The Enforcement Directorate (ED) has filed a caveat application in the Supreme Court in response to Bharatiya Rashtra Samithi (BRS) MLC K Kavitha’s petition contesting the investigative agency’s summons issued against her in connection with the Delhi excise policy case.

A litigant files a Caveat application to guarantee that no adverse order is issued against them without being heard. Kavitha, Telangana Chief Minister K Chandrasekhar Rao’s daughter, has petitioned the Supreme Court, claiming that a woman cannot be called for interrogation before the ED in office and that her questioning should take place at her house.

On March 15, the Supreme Court agreed to hear Kavitha’s petition contesting the Enforcement Directorate’s (ED) summons on March 24.

The ED requested that the MLC appear before it again on March 16, but she did not, stating that her appeal is ongoing in the Supreme Court. The court has consented to hear her appeal in connection with a money laundering case involving alleged anomalies in the Delhi excise policy case on March 24.

The attorney representing Kavitha claimed that a lady is now being called by ED for interrogation and that it is “totally against the law”.

She has also requested that all ED processes, including those relating to the recording of statements, be audio or videographed in the presence of her counsel at a visible distance, for example, by installing adequate CCTV cameras. She has also moved to vacate an impounding order issued on March 11, 2023, and to declare the seizure made under it null and invalid.

In the petition, she said, “Despite the petitioner, Kavitha not being named in the FIR, certain members of the incumbent ruling political party at the centre made scandalous statements linking the petitioner to the Delhi Excise Policy and the said FIR.”

“The political conspiracy against the petitioner (K Kavitha) unfortunately did not end with judicial intervention by way of the Suit. The Enforcement Directorate filed a remand application qua one of the accused on November 30, 2022, before the concerned Court. This remand application contained the personal contact details of the petitioner. There was no rhyme or reason to include the personal contact details of the petitioner in a remand application that did not even concern the petitioner. The act is all the more egregious considering the petitioner is a lady,” BRS leader said.

“The subsequent events are extremely shameful and in the belief of the petitioner, were orchestrated by the Enforcement Directorate at the behest of the members of the incumbent ruling party at the centre, as part of a larger conspiracy against the petitioner,” she said.

K Kavitha went on to say that the remand application, which included the Petitioner’s contact information, had been leaked to the media and the general public.

“The remand application was shared extensively over social media. Such an act is petty, illegal, and an unfortunate reflection upon the malicious conduct of the Enforcement Directorate in consonance with the political party in power at centre,” Kavitha said.

She further added that ED has also refused her plea wanting to be interviewed at her house, and the probe agency gave a categorical declaration that “there is no provision under the PMLA for the recording of statements at any persons’ residence”.

“That immediately thereafter on March 8, 2023, at 11:03 pm, the Petitioner sent an email asserting her rights to be examined at her residence. However, the Petitioner after reserving her rights intimated to the Respondent that she will appear before them on March 11, 2023,” Kavitha added.