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AgustaWestland scam: Delhi High Court dismisses ED plea to cancel Ratul Puri’s bail

The court noted that four other accused in the case were already out on bail, and the businessman had spent over 100 days in prison.

AgustaWestland scam: Delhi High Court dismisses ED plea to cancel Ratul Puri’s bail
A file photo of businessman Ratul Puri. | Hindustan Power Website

The Delhi High Court on Tuesday dismissed the Enforcement Directorate’s plea to set aside the bail granted to businessman Ratul Puri in a money laundering case related to the AgustaWestland chopper scam, PTI reported.

The businessman, who is the nephew of Madhya Pradesh Chief Minister Kamal Nath, was granted bail by a trial court last month. The Enforcement Directorate had arrested him on September 4.

Justice Suresh Kait rejected the investigating agency’s plea, pointing out that four other accused in the case were already out on bail and Puri had spent more than 100 days in custody.

Puri is accused of receiving kickbacks in the AgustaWestland deal. He has been questioned several times in the past few months for alleged tax evasion. The previous Congress-led United Progressive Alliance government had signed the Rs 3,565-crore helicopter deal in 2010 with the British-Italian firm AgustaWestland. Following Italy’s arrest of the head of Finmeccanica, AgustaWestland’s parent company, on charges of paying bribes to win the contract, the deal was put on hold. Christian Michel was extradited to India in January 2019 and is now lodged in Tihar Jail.

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