The Supreme Court on Tuesday dismissed a plea of journalist Rana Ayyub challenging summons by the Ghaziabad special court in a money laundering case. A bench of Justices V Ramasubramanian and JB Pardiwala allowed Ayyub to raise the issue of jurisdiction before the trial court, saying it is a question of evidence.
On January 31, the top court had reserved its verdict on a plea of Ayyub challenging the summons. On January 25, the top court had asked a special court in Ghaziabad to adjourn the proceedings in the money laundering case against Ayyub scheduled for hearing on January 27 to a date after January 31.
In her writ petition, Ayyub has sought quashing of the proceedings initiated by the ED in Ghaziabad citing lack of jurisdiction as the alleged offence of money laundering occurred in Mumbai. On November 29 last year, the special PMLA court in Ghaziabad took cognisance of the prosecution complaint (charge sheet) filed by the ED and summoned Ayyub.
The ED charge sheet was filed under section 45 read with section 44 of the Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA), 2002. On October 12 last year, the ED had filed a charge sheet against Ayyub, accusing her of cheating the public and using Rs 2.69 crore she got in charity for creating personal assets, and also violating the foreign contribution law. “Rana Ayyub launched three fundraiser charity campaigns on the ‘Ketto’ platform, starting from April 2020 and collected funds totalling Rs 2,69,44,680,” the ED had said in a statement.