SC to consider today review plea by Karti Chidambaram against PMLA judgment

The Supreme Court on Wednesday will take up a plea by Congress MP Karti P. Chidambaram seeking review of its recent PMLA judgment, which upheld the sweeping powers of the Enforcement Directorate to investigate and arrest.

A bench headed by Chief Justice N.V. Ramana and comprising Justices Dinesh Maheshwari and C.T. Ravikumar will consider the review petition filed by Chidambaram inside the chamber at 1.20 p.m.

According to Chidambaram, the judgment deserves to be reviewed on grounds of grave error and being contradictory to earlier judgments and provisions of the Constitution.

On July 27, the top court had delivered its verdict on a batch of petitions challenging various provisions of the Prevention of Money Laundering Act 2002.

On Tuesday, the PMLA judgment also received a critique from a three-judge bench headed by Chief Justice N.V. Ramana.

In a 96-page judgment dealing with provisions of Benami Transaction (Prohibition) Amendment Act, 2016, the top court made a short remark on the PMLA judgment titled ‘Vijay Madanlal Choudary’, which was pronounced by a bench headed by Justice A.M. Khanwilkar on July 27.

The top court noted that in Vijay Madanlal Choudary & Ors vs. Union of India, this Court dealt with confiscation proceedings under Section 8 of the Prevention of Money Laundering Act, 2002 (PMLA) and limited the application of Section 8(4) of PMLA concerning interim possession by authority before conclusion of final trial to exceptional cases.

“The Court distinguished the earlier cases in view of the unique scheme under the impugned legislation therein. Having perused the said judgment, we are of the opinion that the aforesaid ratio requires further expounding in an appropriate case, without which, much scope is left for arbitrary application,” said the top court.

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