Representing Enamul Haque in the cattle smuggling case, senior Advocate Vikas Pahwa on Monday submitted before the High Court that this is the third arrest arrest of his client, this time by the Enforcement Directorate (ED).
The court listed the matter for the next hearing on January 31, 2023.
Haque was arrested by the ED on February 18, this year as a prime accused in a case related to cattle smuggling across the India-Bangladesh border in West Bengal.
Pahwa argued that the ED should satisfy the court on how the proceeds of crime are generated under in this case.
He further submitted that all the allegations on the CBI charge sheet name accused persons, but nothing about the offences, cattle smuggling, etc, and it has no supporting evidence at all.
“They have not identified the hawala channels, no bank statements, no statements that money has come from Bangladesh, nothing on how the money was used,” he said.
Furthermore, he contended that they have just picked up a diary but there is no evidence of who has given the money to Manoj Sinha, who is Haque’s staff. They have just picked the entries from the diary.
Pahwa submitted that the link of the proceeds of crime is missing. He said: “It is ED’s duty to establish the foundation facts of the case. The burden of proof shifts only when trial starts and charge sheet is filed.”
On December 13, Pahwa had argued that the investigation agency failed to show scheduled offences, and proceeds of crime, and thus, Section 3 of the Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA) falls flat in the case against Haque.
A single-judge bench of Justice Anup Jairam Bhambhani had heard Haque’s bail plea.
Pahwa had submitted that what Haque is doing is happening throughout the country, which is buying cattle auctioned by the government and then selling them in the market.
He had contented that money laundering is not a standalone offence according to the apex court’s judgment on the Vijay Madanlal case.
Pahwa had argued that ED is alleging Haque of cattle smuggling under Sections 120B, 420 of IPC and not bribery. He had added that if cattle are going out, money has to come to India.
Pahwa had further submitted that the ED is showing two transactions, one of Rs 12.5 crore and Rs 6.10 crore to two different people based on a handwritten diary by Sinha, who has not been charge-sheeted, nor is an accused, nor has his handwriting been matched.
Moreover, Sinha doesn’t even know Haque. “In fact, the ED is relying on a certified true copy they took from CBI,” he had added.