Madhya Pradesh Chief Minister Kamal Nath’s nephew and former executive director of now-defunct Moser Baer, Ratul Puri who was arrested on Tuesday in an alleged Rs354 crore bank fraud case, has now approached a Delhi court to surrender in a separate money-laundering case connected to the AgustaWestland chopper scam.
The court will hear Puri’s request to surrender tomorrow. The Delhi court had refused to cancel a non-bailable warrant against him in the case related to the chopper scam. Puri had said that he was wiling to cooperate in the probe. A day before that, the Delhi High Court had rejected his request for protection from arrest.
In his plea Puri’s counsel and Advocate Vijay Aggarwal, said, “As the anticipatory bail application of the applicant has been dismissed and the non-bailable warrant issued against the applicant, the applicant herein seeks permission to surrender before this court.”
Puri told the court he was willing to join the probe into the chopper scam but requested that a non-bailable warrant put out against him be cancelled. The defence counsel also said that the court may be pleased to pass necessary orders and directions, thereby permitting Puri to surrender pursuant to the non-bailable warrant issued against him.
Puri has been under the investigative agencies’ scanner for allegedly receiving kickbacks in the AgustaWestland chopper deal through his companies. The ED has alleged that accounts associated with firms owned and operated by Puri were used to receive kickbacks and launder the money.
47-year-old Puri was arrested on Tuesday in an alleged Rs354 crore bank fraud case. The case was filed by CBI for defrauding the Central Bank of India. The agency took the action after filing the money laundering case under Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA) against Puri and others late Monday night based on the Central Bureau of Investigation’s (CBI) FIR.
Puri has also been involved in a number of separate investigations, including the AgustaWestland chopper scam involving allegations of bribe to facilitate Rs3,600 crore deal for a dozen luxury helicopters for Indian VIPs in 2007, when the UPA was in power.
On Monday, he was summoned by the Enforcement Directorate in connection with the AgustaWestland case and after brief questioning, arrested for the alleged bank fraud.