J&K: ED Summons Mehbooba Mufti's Mother in Money Laundering Case
The ED's notice came hours after the PDP announced its decision to stay away from the delimitation process.
The Enforcement Directorate (ED) on Tuesday, 6 July, summoned People's Democratic Party (PDP) President Mehbooba Mufti’s mother to the agency office on 14 July in connection with a money laundering case.
This came hours after the PDP announced its decision to stay away from the proceedings of the Delimitation Commission, saying that the Commission “lacks the constitutional and legal mandate in the first place."
Mufti posted ED’s notice on her official Twitter handle saying, “On the day PDP chose not to meet Delimitation Commission, ED sent a summon to my mother to appear in person for unknown charges. In its attempts to intimidate political opponents, GOI doesn’t even spare senior citizens."
She added, "Agencies like (National Investigation Agency) NIA & ED are now its tools to settle scores.”
Filed under the Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA), the case is linked to the recovery of at least two diaries by the ED after raids on an alleged associate of Mufti, a former Jammu and Kashmir chief minister, news agency PTI reported.
Officials said that the diaries contained details of alleged payments made from the chief minister's discretionary fund, which the ED claims were in violation of rules.
The ED has alleged that these funds were diverted during the PDP rule in the erstwhile state.
Moreover, officials added, a few lakh rupees from these funds are alleged to have been transferred into the accounts of Nazir, wife of late J&K chief minister Mufti Mohammad Sayeed, and the ED wants to question her about it.
Mehbooba Mufti expressed surprise that the notice was served hours after PDP decided not to meet the Delimitation Commission, set up to redraw Assembly constituencies in Jammu and Kashmir.
‘Lacks the Constitutional And Legal Mandate’: PDP
In a two-page letter written to Ranjana Desai, a retired Supreme Court judge heading the panel, PDP General Secretary Ghulam Nabi Lone said that the party has decided to stay away from the delimitation process and not be part of "some exercise, the outcome which is widely believed to be pre-planned and which may further hurt the interests of our people", PTI reported.
Lone said that by the abrogation of Article 370 of the Indian Constitution in August 2019, the people of Jammu and Kashmir have been "robbed of their legitimate constitutional and democratic rights."
The letter further added, “We are of the considered opinion that the Delimitation Commission lacks the constitutional and legal mandate in the first place and its very existence and objectives have left every ordinary resident of J-K with many questions", PTI reported.
Leaders of different political parties of Jammu and Kashmir on Tuesday, 6 July, met members of the Delimitation Commission, which is in Srinagar to meet administrative officials, political parties, people's representatives, and other stakeholders in relation to the imminent exercise of redrawing boundaries in the Union Territory.
Following Tuesday's meeting, Congress J&K chief Ghulam Ahmad Mir said, "If delimitation is to be done in 2026 in the country, why is it being done in 2021 in Jammu and Kashmir. This is a big question. Till J&K's statehood is restored, delimitation will not be beneficial."
The bifurcation of the state of Jammu and Kashmir into two Union Territories alongside the effective revocation of Article 370 had set the ball rolling for a delimitation exercise to be carried out in the region.
(With inputs from PTI)
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