Courts Update Agusta Westland VVIP chopper case: ED decision to revoke...

Agusta Westland VVIP chopper case: ED decision to revoke Rajiv Saxena’s status as approver stayed by SC

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New Delhi (ILNS): The Supreme Court today stayed the Delhi High Court order dismissing a plea by the Enforcement Directorate’s (ED) seeking the revocation of approver status granted to Rajiv Saxena in the Agusta Westland VVIP chopper case. The Enforcement Directorate sought revocation on the ground that while Saxena had undertaken to disclose all the facts related to the offense, he was not doing so.

A three-Judge bench of Chief Justice of India SA Bobde, Justice AS Bopanna and Justice V Subramanian issued notice on the plea filed by the ED challenging the June 8 order of the High Court that upheld the Trial Court’s order which had not agrred with ED’s decision to revoke Rajiv Saxena’s  status as approver in the case. Saxena, a Dubai-based businessman, was extradited to India in January 2019, in the Rs 3,600 crore scam relating to the purchase of 12 VVIP helicopters from Agusta Westland.

According to the High Court, ED’s plea for revoking the approver status was not maintainable as statement under Section 306 (4) of the Criminal Procedure Code (CrPC) that requires recording of the statement of an accomplice who has been granted a pardon, had not been recorded.

However, according to ED, Saxena was allowed to be an approver subject to his making full disclosure but he withheld and did not disclose all facts within his knowledge thereby contradicting the terms of the grant of a pardon to him by the trial court.ILNS/SB/SS

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