Delhi HC asks ED to consider Vivo’s representation on freeing bank accs
The matter is posted for July 13.
Justice Yashwant Varma asked the enforcement agency to give its reply to the plea filed by the phone company seeking to unfreeze some of its accounts.
The court directed Advocate Zoheb Hossain, counsel for ED, to take note of the reliefs sought by Vivo in the petition.
Vivo’s lawyers — Sidharth Luthra and Siddharth Agarwal — said there are liabilities such as taxes, TDS, and excise duties to be paid. “There are thousands of employees in the company. There is an urgency as these liabilities are growing every day,” he said.
Meanwhile, ED’s counsel opposed Vivo’s plea to unfreeze the bank accounts, saying it was too soon to do so. He added that the search operation by the agency would be over at the end of the day.
“Keeping in mind the financial conditions mentioned in the petition, this court directs the respondent (ED) to consider the representation in the petition and decide to give permission to deal with the seized property as under Section 17(1)A of the Prevention of Money Laundering Act,” Justice Yashwant Varma said.
The matter was listed by Vivo in the morning before Chief Justice Satish Chandra Sharma and Justice Subramonium Prasad.
Earlier, the Enforcement Directorate’s (ED’s) money-laundering probe into the mobile phone maker revealed the company, to avoid paying taxes in India, remitted about Rs 62,476 crore of its turnover to China between 2017 and 2021.
According to the agency, 18 companies that were allegedly incorporated fraudulently helped the smartphone maker to transfer 50 per cent of the turnover outside India, mainly China. The sale proceeds during the period stood at Rs 1.25 trillion.