SC lets money laundering case against Rana Ayyub in Uttar Pradesh proceed
The journalist had challenged the summons issued by a Ghaziabad court arguing that the offence she has been accused of had not been committed in Uttar Pradesh.
The Supreme Court on Tuesday dismissed journalist Rana Ayyub’s plea challenging summons issued against her by a Ghaziabad court in a money laundering case initiated by the Enforcement Directorate, Live Law reported.
The Ghaziabad court, which deals with cases filed under the Prevention of Money Laundering Act, had directed Ayyub to appear before it on January 27. The journalist had challenged this order, following which the Supreme Court directed the Ghaziabad court to adjourn its proceedings against Ayyub.
In her plea before the Supreme Court, Ayyub had argued that the Ghaziabad court had no jurisdiction in the case as the alleged offence had not been committed in Uttar Pradesh.
However, on Tuesday, a bench of Justices V Ramasubramanian and JB Pardiwala refused to set aside the proceedings in the Ghaziabad court.
The judges noted that under Section 3 of Prevention of Money Laundering Act, the offence can be said to have taken place when any of the six activities – concealment, possession, acquisition, use, projecting as untainted property or claiming as untainted property – is carried out, Bar and Bench reported.
“The question as to which is the place is a question of fact decided on evidence,” the judges said. “We leave it open to raise this issue before trial court.”
The money laundering case dates back to October, when the Enforcement Directorate filed a prosecution complaint against Ayuub, based on a first information report filed against the journalist in September 2021. The FIR alleged that Ayyub had illegally acquired funds from the public in the name of charity through fundraiser campaigns on an online crowdfunding platform Ketto.
The investigating agency had also accused Ayyub of receiving funds from abroad without registering them under the Foreign Contribution (Regulation) Act, 2010. In February last year, the Enforcement Directorate had attached money in Ayyub bank account’s worth Rs.1.77 crore under the Prevention of Money Laundering Act.