The Supreme Court on Tuesday refused to stay the ongoing trial against Swan Telecom promoters Shahid Usman Balwa and Vinod Goenka, who along with former Telecom Minister A Raja and others were chargesheeted by Enforcement Directorate(ED) in a 2G scam-related money laundering case.
A bench headed by Chief Justice H L Dattu, however, said that a batch of pleas filed by various accused challenging framing of charges against them by the special court will be heard in August.
Besides Balwa and Goenka, directors of Kusegaon Fruits and Vegetable Pvt Ltd Rajiv Aggarwal and Asif Balwa and five accused firms — DB Realty Ltd, Mystical Constructions Pvt Ltd, Kusegaon Reality Pvt Ltd, Dyanmix Reality Ltd and Eversmile Construction Company Ltd — had approached the apex court challenging framing of charges against them.
The bench said that all the petitions challenging framing of charges in the money laundering case would be heard together.
A special court had on October 31, last year ordered framing of charges under the Prevention of Money Laundering Act against 19 accused, including Raja, DMK MP Kanimozhi and DMK supremo M Karunanidhi’s wife Dayalu Ammal.
Besides them, other individual accused are Kalaignar TV MD Sharad Kumar and its Director P Amirtham and Bollywood producer Karim Morani.
The court had said that there was prima facie evidence that they played roles in “parking” of illegal gratification of Rs 200 crore in Kalaignar TV. Besides the 10 individuals, who are out on bail, it had also framed charges against nine firms in the case.
The accused firms are — Swan Telecom Pvt Ltd (STPL), Kusegaon Realty Pvt Ltd (formerly known as Kusegaon Fruits and Vegetables Pvt Ltd), Cineyug Media and Entertainment Pvt Ltd (formerly known as Cineyug Films Pvt Ltd), Kalaignar TV Pvt Ltd, Dynamix Realty, Eversmile Construction Company Pvt Ltd,
Conwood Constructions and Developers (P) Ltd, DB Realty Ltd and Nihar Constructions Pvt Ltd.
ED, in its charge sheet, had alleged that all the accused were involved in the Rs 200-crore money transaction which was not “bonafide” and “genuine” and it was a “bribe for grant of telecom licences to DB Group companies” by Raja.