‘Treated with indignity, not allowed lunch during ED questioning’: TDP MP tells HC

Former Union Minister and TDP MP Y S Chowdary on Wednesday told the Delhi High Court that the Enforcement Directorate officials have treated him with indignity and denied him to have lunch. The court was hearing Chowdary’s plea challenging action initiated by the ED in a case pertaining to the Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA).

The TDP MP is accused of bank fraud. Chowdary, a member of the Rajya Sabha, is a close aide of Telugu Desam Party (TDP) President and Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister N. Chandrababu Naidu.

Chowdary was Minister of Science and Technology in the Modi cabinet till March when the TDP pulled out of the NDA government.

Chowdary’s counsel told Justice Najmi Waziri that parliamentarian was treated with indignity during his questioning for nearly eight hours on two days: December 4 and 5.

Chowdary has appeared before the ED for questioning on December 3, 4 and 5 after the High Court on November 30 directed the probe agency not to take any coercive steps against the former minister.

Chowdary’s counsel senior advocates Rajiv Nayar and Dayan Krishnan told the court that ED officials breached its order directing the agency not to take coercive action against the former minister. Chowdary’s counsel said he was treated nicely on the first day of questioning which began at 11:30 am and concluded at 6:00 pm. He was allowed to have lunch on the first day.

But the former minister was not offered food or permitted to take his lunch by the ED officials the next two days, the counsel added. He was forced to sit in the agency office till 8 pm even after the questioning concluded at 6 pm the next two days.

However, ED counsel Anil Soni denied the allegations and told the court that the MP was offered food, but he had refused.

The court asked Chowdary’s counsel to file the allegations in an affidavit and directed the ED to respond to these allegations.

Meanwhile, the court extended till January 16 the interim relief granted to Chowdhary asking ED not to take coercive steps against the former minister.


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