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Sunday, June 4, 2023

Rot in judiciary: Suspended judge demanded Rs 5-7 cr for helping accused in IREO scam

Suspended special judge of the PMLA court at Panchkula in Haryana, Sudhir Parmar, allegedly demanded Rs 5 to Rs 7 crore from Roop Bansal, his brother Basant Bansal – the owners of M3M – and Lalit Goyal, the owner of the IREO group, for allegedly helping them in cases lodged by the central agencies.

The Anti-Corruption Bureau (ACB) Panchkula has alleged in its FIR accessed by IANS that Sudhir Parmar, the suspended special judge for the CBI and the ED, had allegedly been helping Roop Bansal, his brother Basant Bansal and Lalit Goyal in lieu of undue advantage in criminal cases by the Enforcement Department (ED) lodged under PMLA.

“A reliable source information was received against Parmar containing allegations of showing favouritism to the accused persons in ED and CBI cases pending in his court. Following the information, we have lodged an FIR,” the source said.

The source said that a PMLA case was registered by the ED in 2021 against Lalit Goyal, the Vice-Chairman and Managing Director of realty giant IREO Group for cheating and siphoning of funds of home buyers and others. Goyal was placed under arrest in November 2021.

“The said matter is pending in the court of Sudhir Parmar. We accessed the screenshots of WhatsApp chats between Sudhir Parmar and another person through his own mobile phone as well as that of his nephew Ajay Parmar, wherein he (Sudhir Parmar) allegedly demanded Rs 5-7 crore for helping the said owners of M3M in ED cases. There was a middleman who would later receive the money on his behalf from the accused,” the source said.

In the same chat, the other person states that Rs 5 crore was already given to Sudhir Parmar by the accused in the IREO case.

Before his posting as Special Judge, CBI/PMLA court at Panchkula in Haryana, Sudhir Parmar was posted as ASI/ADI at Gurugram, where by abusing his official position of being a judge, he got in contact with the owners of M3M and IREO group. He got undue favour by getting his nephew Ajay Parmar appointed as a legal advisor in M3M at a package of Rs 12 lakh per annum.

Later, Sudhir Parmar was transferred as special judge of CBI/ED at Panchkula and the annual package of his nephew was straightway hiked to Rs 18-20 lakh.

“Sudhir Parmar being CBI/ED special judge, in connivance with the accused persons started favouring them for the sake of illegal gratification through his nephew. These facts are disclosed in the recordings provided by the source. In one of the audio recordings, Sudhir Parmar is asking someone for Rs 1.5 crore (Rs 50 lakh per head) as illegal gratification for meeting with the accused,” read the ACB’s FIR.

The FIR further read that in three other recordings Sudhir Parmar is speaking with Roop Bansal and says that he was afraid of his connectivity with the accused being disclosed due to the sensitive nature of his posting. He told him that he would never talk to him (Roop Bansal) on his personal mobile phone and always speaks with him and other accused of M3M and IREO through the mobile phone or WhatsApp/FaceTime from the phone of his nephew Ajay Parmar.

Similarly, Bansal also told Sudhir Parmar that they would also never talk to him directly on phone and would communicate through his nephew.

“One audio recording provided by the source revealed that Sudhir Parmar during a conversation with an unknown person, claimed that he did not let Roop Bansal become an accused in ED cases. In another recording with Roop Bansal, the owner of M3M, he even promises that if he (Roop Bansal) is let off in the CBI case, then he (Sudhir Parmar) would not let him (Roop Bansal) become accused in the ED case.”

In another recording pertaining to property worth Rs 1200 crore, Sudhir Parmar claimed that he spoke to Sunil Yadav (ED officer) and he would not allow the property to be attached provided some justification for the transaction of money is shown.

In another recording, Sudhir Parmar stated that he met the wife of accused Lalit Goyal, his brother-in-law Sudhanshu Mittal and assured them that although he cannot release Lalit Goyal on bail in the PMLA case, yet he would favour him by dealing with him in the court in a respectful manner and would not harass him by issuing frequent warrant/notices, or denying permission to visit abroad. And would thus make him feel at home while in court.

“In addition to the above instances of criminal misconduct, the audio recordings also contain conversation of Sudhir Parmar with one VP Gupta (a removed judge of Haryana) wherein, they are making strategy to give a favour with a view to extort money from TC Gupta, IAS officer (retired), then Director of Town and Country Planning Department, Haryana and now apparently an accused in some case of CBI/ED.”

In view of the above, a prima facie case under section 7, 8, 11 and 13 of Prevention of Corruption Act 1988 and section 120 of IPC is made out against Sudhir Parmar, Ajay Parmar, Roop Bansal and other unknown persons.

In this regard, the Chief Justice, High Court of Punjab and Haryana had allowed the ACB to lodge the case against Sudhir Parmar.

After that an FIR under section 7, 8, 11 and 13 of the Prevention of Corruption Act, 1988 and section 120-B of the IPC was lodged against Sudhir Parmar.

(The story has been published via a syndicated feed with a modified headline.)

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