NCP Leader Nawab Malik Sent to ED Custody Till 3 March in Money Laundering Case

NCP chief Sharad Pawar alleged that Nawab Malik was being 'harassed' for 'speaking the truth.'

6 min read

Maharashtra Minister and Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) leader Nawab Malik was sent to Enforcement Directorate (ED) custody till 3 March on Wednesday, 23 February, in connection with the Dawood Ibrahim money laundering case.

The court has permitted Malik to carry his medicines and get home food for the duration of his custody, news agency ANI reported.

"The court will hear tomorrow our applications seeking permission to allow Nawab Malik to carry his medicines & get food from his home during his custody, and the presence of lawyers during his custodial interrogation," Nawab Malik's lawyer Tariq Sayyed was quoted as saying.

Earlier on Wednesday, the ED had arrested the NCP leader after over eight hours of questioning.

Soon after his arrest, as he came out of the ED office, Malik could be heard saying that he has been arrested but he won't be scared. "We will fight and win," he said.

Earlier on Wednesday morning, a team of ED officials had reached Malik's Kurla residence and had taken him to the agency's office in Mumbai. Advocate Amir Malik, the minister's son, accompanied him to the agency's premises.


What's the Case?

The ED mentioned in the special PMLA (Prevention of Money Laundering Act) court that it is investigating a land deal in which the property was allegedly bought by Malik from an aide of Dawood Ibrahim at a price lower than its prevailing market rate.

Representing the agency, ASG Anil Singh alleged that the property worth Rs 3.3 crore was bought for Rs 50 lakh, LiveLaw reported.

The deal allegedly involved two people – Sardar Shahwali Khan, who was convicted in the 1993 Mumbai bomb blasts case, and Salim Patel, a frontman of Ibrahim’s sister Haseena Parkar.

Patel who had the power of attorney and was under Haseena Parker's control, sold the property to one of the companies owned by Malik.

In the arrest order issued by ED Assistant Director Niraj Kumar, the agency said that Malik had been "found to be guilty of an offence punishable under the provisions of Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA), 2002 (15 of 2003)."

NCP chief Sharad Pawar alleged that Nawab Malik was being 'harassed' for 'speaking the truth.'

Nawab Malik's arrest order

(Photo Courtesy: Twitter/Priti Gandhi)

Earlier this month, the ED had filed a case under the PMLA and the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act (UAPA) based on an FIR registered by the National Investigation Agency (NIA) against the D Company.


'Misuse of Power': Sharad Pawar

NCP chief Sharad Pawar has alleged that the minister was being 'harassed' for 'speaking the truth.'

"There is nothing new in this. We were expecting the action against Nawab Malik since he was openly expressing his stand... Those who express their views openly against the BJP government and the investigating agencies, those who speak the truth, are being harassed," The Indian Express quoted the leader as saying.

He added that the ED's action was a "misuse of power."

"When I was the chief minister, I was also targeted in this manner. This is an attempt to defame those who speak out with a clear mind," the leader reportedly stated.


MVA Ministers To Protest Against ED, Central Government on Thursday

With rising chorus of Malik's resignation from the Cabinet by the Bharatiya Janata Party-led Opposition in the state, a meeting was held between Chief Minister (CM) Uddhav Thackeray, NCP supremo Sharad Pawar and Home Minister Dilip Walse Patil at the CM's residence.

The meeting was followed by another meeting of NCP ministers Ajit Pawar, Chhagan Bhujbal, Hasan Mushrif, Rajesh Tope, Dilip Walse Patil, and Congress ministers Ashok Chavan, Balasaheb Thorat, and Sunil Kedar, at Sharad Pawar's residence to discuss the strategy of the Maha Vikas Aghadi (MVA) government in the matter.

NCP leader and Maharashtra minister Chhagan Bhujbal said after the meeting that the MVA ministers will hold a demonstration against the ED and the central government at the Mahatma Gandhi Smarak on Thursday at 10 am.

He also said that Nawab Malik was arrested in the wrong manner and was being punished for attacking the Opposition. "We will fight for justice. They (Centre) are putting pressure on our ministers in order to collapse our government," he said.

Bhujbal said that the PMLA case was not applicable in the case of Nawab Malik.

"Many people have been hanged and punished in the case. But Dawood Ibrahim's sister Haseena Parkar and other accused involved in the allegations against Nawab Malik are not even alive. That is why these actions have been taken with a sense of vengeance. We will also fight a legal battle against this and in public," he added.

Bhujbal said that the question of Malik's resignation does not arise as Narayan Rane was also arrested but he did not resign. "Maharashtra government will not take the resignation of Nawab Malik. After a meeting with the CM, all three parties agreed on this."

He said several national leaders, including Mamata Banerjee have been calling Sharad Pawar and Uddhav Thackeray to express their support.

Another meeting is likely to be held at the CM's residence later in the evening.


Maharashtra BJP to Hold Statewide Protest Demanding Nawab Malik Resignation

Meanwhile, the Maharashtra Bharatiya Janata Party will also hold a statewide protest on Thursday demanding the resignation of NCP leader Nawab Malik.

Maharashtra BJP chief Chandrakant Patil, while speaking to the media, demanded that Malik must resign from his post.

"If he doesn't resign, we will protest. How are they running the government? There is a long list of allegations against Maharashtra ministers. We are getting tired of reading it," he said.

BJP leader Kirit Somaiya took to Twitter to say that after Malik, Cabinet minister Anil Parab "will be next."

NCP chief Sharad Pawar alleged that Nawab Malik was being 'harassed' for 'speaking the truth.'

'Revenge, Insult to Maharashtra': Sena, NCP Leaders React

Shiv Sena MP Sanjay Raut, while speaking to the media said: "All these investigations are being undertaken with a vengeful thought against Maharashtra in mind. Rest will be decided in court on the basis of what evidence you have and what evidence has been manufactured."

Later, he took to social media and tweeted:

"They cannot fight MVA face-to-face, so they have resorted to attacking from behind. You are happy that you have fraudulently imprisoned one minister, so be it. We won't ask Nawab Malik to resign, we will fight and win. Kans and Ravan too were killed, that's what Hindutva is all about. Jai Maharashtra!"

Raut had earlier told ANI:

"Nawab Malik is a senior leader and Maharashtra's cabinet minister. The way in which he was taken from his home by the ED is a challenge to Maharashtra government. A minister is taken away by central agencies by coming to our state. After 2024, you'll (the BJP) be probed too."
Sanjay Raut

NCP parliamentarian Supriya Sule termed the action an "insult to Maharashtra."

"For many days people of the BJP were tweeting that ED notice will come against Nawab Malik and Maha Vikas Aghadi. They directly took him to the ED office without any notice. I don't know what new type of politics they have started. It's an insult to Maharashtra," Sule said.

Meanwhile, Maharashtra NCP chief and state minister Jayant Patil claimed that the Centre was taking 'revenge' by implicating Malik.

"Nawab Malik has been taken to the ED office for questioning, without prior information. He had exposed BJP leaders in the past few days, so revenge is being taken now," Patil reportedly said.

Former Maharashtra chief minister and senior Congress leader Prithviraj Chavan took to Twitter to say: "Arrest of #NawabMalik is yet another attempt by the BJP to destabilise the MVA government. The imminent defeat in UP election has sent shockwaves within the BJP. They cannot afford to lose both UP and Maharashtra before 2024. This is clearly a political witch-hunt (sic)."


Protests Outside ED Office

Members of the NCP staged protests outside the ED office against the "vengeful nature of the ED action against state minorities minister Nawab Malik," a tweet by the official party handle read.

The protesters raised slogans against the BJP and central agencies over the "anti-democratic" crackdown.

  • Heavy police presence outside ED office in Mumbai as protests erupted over Maharashtra Minister Nawab Malik's arrest.

    (Photo: PTI)


Wednesday's development comes a few weeks after the Maha Vikas Aghadi (MVA) government minister hit out at the Centre, accusing them of looking to topple the state government of Maharashtra and targeting NCP officials.

"But it is their (of the BJP) illusion that we will get scared. No matter how much they try, the (state) government will complete five years. This government will run for 25 years. We will be in power in the state, and we will also attain power at the Centre," news agency PTI had quoted Malik as saying.

The statement came in the wake of Sanjay Raut's letter to the Rajya Sabha Chairman, indicating that central agencies were targeting leaders of the Shiv Sena.

(With inputs from PTI.)

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Topics:  Dawood Ibrahim   ED   Nawab Malik 

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