Mumbai, October 14 (Agency)
The Bombay High Court on Thursday granted anticipatory bail to Mandakini Khadse, wife of Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) leader Eknath Khadse, in a money laundering case. He is accused of alleged money laundering during a land deal in Pune in 2016. A single bench of Justice N W Sambre also directed Mandakini Khadse to appear before the Enforcement Directorate on every Tuesday and Friday from October 17 to November 29. Mandakini’s counsel told the high court that her client would appear before the PMLA (Prohibition of Money Laundering Act) court on October 21 to comply with the non-bailable warrant issued on Tuesday (October 12). The court asked the directorate of enforcement to file a reply on Mandakini’s anticipatory bail plea by November 29. The matter will be heard further on the same day.
It is noteworthy that after not appearing in spite of summons, the special court had issued a non-bailable warrant against Mandakini and her anticipatory bail plea was rejected, after which she moved the High Court. Apart from the Khadse couple, their son-in-law Girish Chaudhary is also named in the FIR and is presently in judicial custody. The ED alleges that Choudhary and Khadse bought land at Bhosari near Pune for Rs 3.75 crore while its actual value was Rs 31.01 crore. The prosecution alleges that Khadse misused his position for this transaction when he was the revenue minister of the state at that time. Khadse had resigned from the post of minister in June 2016 after the land purchase dispute surfaced. He joined the NCP in October 2020, resigning from the BJP.