Shivakumar is expected to be put through documents and queries through the day with a lunch break in between.
Senior Karnataka Congress leader D K Shivakumar appeared before the Enforcement Directorate (ED) on Saturday for the second straight day in a money laundering case, officials said. He appeared at the ED headquarters here, they said. The investigating officer of the case had grilled him for over 4 hours on Friday and recorded his statement under the Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA), the officials said.
Shivakumar is expected to be put through documents and queries through the day with a lunch break in between. While making his first appearance on Friday, after he arrived by air from Bengaluru, the Kanakapura MLA had said he will cooperate with the ED probe. “It is my duty (to appear)… I have to respect the law. We are lawmakers and law abiding citizens. They (ED) have summoned me… I don’t know why they have called me under Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA).” “But, let me see, hear them. I am ready to face them (ED),” he had told reporters outside the ED office.
Shivakumar had to appear before the agency after the Karnataka High Court on Thursday dismissed his petition challenging the summons issued to him by the ED. Earlier on Friday in Bengaluru, Shivakumar indicated that his “instrumental role” in ensuring safe stay of Gujarat Congress MLAs in a Karnataka resort during the Rajya Sabha polls in 2017, amid allegations that the BJP was trying to poach them, was the reason for the I-T searches and subsequent ED action against him. The central agency had in September last year registered a money laundering case against Shivakumar, Haumanthaiah, an employee at Karnataka Bhavan in New Delhi, and others.
The ED case has been filed based on a charge sheet (prosecution complaint) filed by the Income-Tax Department against him last year before a special court in Bengaluru on charges of alleged tax evasion and hawala transactions worth crores. The I-T department has accused Shivakumar and his associate S K Sharma of transporting huge amount of unaccounted cash on a regular basis through ‘hawala’ channels with help of three other accused.