The Principal District Judge, Srinagar in the money laundering case related to the Jammu and Kashmir Cricket Association (JKCA) has issued summons to NC Chief Dr. Farooq Abdullah and other accused in the JKCA scam.

The cognizance was taken by the Court on a complaint filed by the Enforcement Directorate (ED) against the former Chief Minister of Jammu and Kashmir and various other accused in the money laundering scam.

The arguments were advanced by ASGI Tahir Majid Shamsi on behalf of the ED before the Court.

Allegations against Farooq Abdullah

The ED in its complaint has mentioned that for the purpose of development of Cricket in the State of J&K, Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) transferred Rs.112,33,05,618.80/- to Jammu and Kashmir Cricket Association, during the year 2002-03 to December, 2011.

The ED has also stated that CBI has quantified an amount of Rs. 43.69 Crore, out of the above-stated amount, which were misappropriated on account of role played by the accused persons including Farooq Abdullah by way of opening of numerous bank accounts in the name of JKCA as well in the name of the office bearers of JKCA, which was not as per the JKCA rules.

The complaint also includes the details of the bank accounts that were created allegedly with a view to siphon off the funds belonging to JKCA.

The ED also mentioned that during the CBI investigation, various bank accounts of JKCA were opened fraudulently for use and siphoning of funds of JKCA and where the JKCA funds were diverted.

With regards to Farooq Abdullah, the ED has alleged Abdullah who was then the President of JKCA, appointed the other co-accused Ahsan Ahmad Mirza as treasurer of JKCA without him being elected by the working committee members which was in violation of the rules of the Jammu and Kashmir Cricket Association.

Further, the ED has also alleged that Farooq Abdullah ensured that Mirza remained in control of funds of JKCA by initially appointing him treasures on his own and then making him member of finance committee which was not provided as per the rules of JKCA , when a regular Treasurer was appointed as Treasurer of JKCA by the Working Committee Members.

The ED has additionally accused Abdullah of signing a resolution and showing undue favouritism to Mirza and thus facilitating the misappropriation of JKCA funds.

The ED stated that upon investigation, CBI quantified an amount of Rs. 43.69 Crore, out of the above stated amount which were misappropriated on account of role played by the accused persons.

Also, the ED alleged that as per the investigation of CBI Dr. Farooq Abdullah conspired with others to siphon off funds of JKCA for their personal benefits and having thereby generated 'proceeds of crime' while committing scheduled offence of criminal conspiracy under Section 120B of the Jammu and Kashmir State Ranbir Penal Code, 1989, pari materia to Section 120B of Indian Penal Code. Thus, in terms of Section 2(2) of PMLA, 2002, it is covered under Part A, Paragraph 1 of Scheduled Offences under PMLA, 2002.

ED mentioned the Farooq Abdullah and others have committed an offence under Section 3 of Prevention of Money Laundering Act, 2002, punishable under Section 4 PMLA.

The ED has also stated that several evidences were collected as a result of action under Section 50 and Section 54 PMLA to prove that all the conditions under Section 3 PMLA read with Section 2(1)(u) PMLA are satisfied.

Further, it has also been averred huge unexplained cash withdrawals have also been made by the accused from bank accounts where BCCI funds were received, which represents of 'Proceeds of Crime' defined under Section 2(1)(u) PMLA, 2002.

The ED has also demonstrated the complex inter-bank money transfers disclosing placement, layering and integration of JKCA monies for the purpose of money laundering.

It has further been mentioned by the ED that huge amounts of JKCA funds totalling to 26,38,73, 971/- have been withdrawn in cash from various bank accounts which does not have any logical explanation.

It has been alleged by the ED that Farooq Abdullah is knowingly a party and actually involved in the process of generation, acquisition, concealment and use of proceeds of crime and projecting it as untainted.

Further, the ED has alleged that Abdullah was signing the balance sheets of JKCA which did not contain the details of the bank accounts held in the name of JKCA, hence he conspired with other co accused to ensure that not only the bank accounts as mentioned but also transactions done to the extent of approximately 15 Crores through those accounts remained undisclosed to officer bearers and auditors of JKCA.

The ED has also alleged that Farooq Abdullah remained blind eye towards the financial irregularities of JKCA.

The matter has been fixed for further proceedings on August 27, 2022.