Says ED Used As Tool To Hound Political Opponents
Srinagar: Alleging that the Enforcement Directorate (ED) is summoning people who are known to her or her party, former J&K chief minister and PDP president Mehbooba Mufti on Thursday said that she is ready to face any agency provided the process is legitimate.
Mehbooba in a letter to the Director of Enforcement Directorate (ED) said that ‘the use of the ED against political opponents is not an unknown device for a party in the power at the centre’.
The letter comes a week after the PDP president accused BJP-led centre of terrorizing her family and friends in the name of investigation and asked the saffron party to fight with her politically and not through NIA, CBI and ED.
The former chief minister said that this letter is to put the ED on notice that if it intends to question her or examine her electronic or digital devices or those of the members of my family, it shall only do it in the presence of Ms Mehbooba or her representative and under the supervision of an impartial/judicial authority. “If there is any breach of what I consider to be the norms of law, good conduct and constitutionalism, I shall not hesitate to take matter up legally and politically,” she added.
Mehbooba said it has come to her notice that the ED is summoning various persons from Kashmir, possibly in connection with ECIR/16/HIV/2020.
“The only common thread connecting three persons appears to be that they are all acquainting with me, my family or my political party in one or another way. The questioning of these persons is also focused on myself, my personal, political and financial affairs; my later father’s grave and memorial, my sister’s finances, home construction, my brother’s finances and personal affairs etc,” she wrote.
“Not very long ago, a key person of the PDP, who has now been returned successful by the people of Kashmir in the DDC elections, Waheed Parra, was arrested by the NIA in what appears to be a non-existent case around the dates of the elections. On the eve of the results, several of my relatives and party leaders were kept unlawful detention by the J&K administration,” she added.
The PDP president said the use of the ED against political opponents is not an unknown device for a party in the power at the centre. “I wish to notify you that as a responsible citizen and politician, a former chief minister and Members of Parliament, and daughter of one of the most illustrious public personalities in this country, I am ready and willing to face any questioning by any agency. But, I will insist upon the legitimacy of the process,” she said.
“I have understood that mobile phones and personal digital devices of some of the persons summoned in connection with the aforesaid ECIR has been seized by or at the behest of ED, or by intelligence agencies coincidental with the summons issued by the ED,” Mehbooba further said.
“I draw you attention therefore to section 21(2) of the PMLA, 2002 and also notify you of the constitutional right to privacy, the right to democratic politics and indeed the right to due process. This is further to put you on notice that if you intend to question me or examine my electronic or digital devices or those of the members of my family, you shall only do it in the presence of myself or my representative and under the supervision of an impartial/judicial authority. If there is any breach of what I consider to be the norms of law, good conduct and constitutionalism, I shall not hesitate to take matters up legally and politically,” she added. (Agencies)
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