Yes Bank Case: Court Allows BW BusinessWorld Media To Operate Two Frozen Bank Accounts
Signage is displayed outside a Yes Bank Ltd. branch in Mumbai. (Photographer: Dhiraj Singh/Bloomberg)

Yes Bank Case: Court Allows BW BusinessWorld Media To Operate Two Frozen Bank Accounts

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The Delhi High Court has allowed BW BusinessWorld Media Co. to operate its two bank accounts that were frozen under the directions from the Enforcement Directorate which is investigating the Yes Bank scam allegedly involving its co-founder Rana Kapoor and his family.

65% shares of BW BusinessWorld Media are with Kapoor's subsidiary companies, the firm’s lawyer told the court.

Justice AK Chawla and Justice Navin Chawla, in separate orders, said the provisional attachment orders of ED was specific for the amounts attached and granted liberty to the petitioners to operate the two bank accounts subject to keeping a balance of the amount so attached in the two accounts.

“All the writ petitions are disposed of with the direction that the impugned provisional attachment order of May 5 being specific for the amounts attached, the respective petitioners would be at liberty to operate their bank accounts mentioned in the impugned provisional attachment order subject to keeping a balance of the amount attached and that, this would be without prejudice to the rights and contentions of the respondent numbers 1 and 2 (Centre and ED) to pass such further orders of attachment in accordance with law, as may be called for,” the high court said in its orders passed on May 28 and June 10.

Petitioner BW BusinessWorld Media, represented through advocate Pramod Dubey and assisted by Trust Legal law firm and lawyer Sudhir Mishra, submitted that only an amount of Rs 3.29 lakh and Rs 1,093 in HDFC Bank Ltd. accounts have been attached by the ED through the provisional attachment order but despite this limited attachment, the bank has restrained the complete operation of the two accounts.

BW BusinessWorld Media has approached the high court challenging a provisional attachment order passed by the ED under the provisions of the Prevention of Money Laundering Act, arising out of an investigation being conducted by the department in the issue of the Yes Bank case against Rana Kapoor and his family.

The matter was later tagged with five other petitions moved by M/s ART Housing Finance (India) Ltd., PAFM Security Solutions Management Pvt. Ltd., Ncube Planning & Design Pvt. Ltd., Petra Asset and Facility Management Pvt. Ltd. and Rurban Agri Ventures (India) Pvt. Ltd. challenging the same provisional attachment order of May 5 and similar orders were passed. Kapoor and his family members hold shares in these five companies.

Additional Solicitor General Sanjay Jain and central government standing counsel Amit Mahajan, appearing for the Centre and ED, said that the provisional attachment order was limited to the extent that it speaks of.

According to the Central Bureau of Investigation FIR, the alleged fraud started taking shape between April and June 2018 when Yes Bank invested Rs 3,700 crore in short-term debentures of the scam-hit Dewan Housing Finance Corporation Ltd.

Also read: Yes Bank Case: Enforcement Directorate Raids Five Premises Of Cox & Kings In Mumbai

The agency has alleged that Kapoor, 62, entered into a criminal conspiracy with DHFL promoter Kapil Wadhawan and his brother Dheeraj for extending the financial assistance to DHFL through Yes Bank in return of substantial undue benefits to himself and his family members through companies held by them.

In return, the Wadhawans allegedly "paid kickback of Rs 600 crore" to Kapoor and his family members in the form of loan to DoIT Urban Ventures (India) Pvt. Ltd., a firm linked to the Kapoor family, the agency has said.

The CBI's FIR came after the ED arrested Kapoor in connection with the scam in March.

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