January 10, 2024
The Enforcement Directorate
(“ED”) after registering a case under Prevention of Money Laundering Act, 2002 (“PMLA”)
back in February 2022 and duly conducting the primary investigation alleged in
July 2023 that INR 62,476 Crore was illegally transferred by Vivo India to
China to avoid payment of taxes in India following the Base Erosion Profit
Shifting (“BEPS”) mechanism pursuant to which ED raided the premises of Vivo
India and its officials for planning and implementing siphoning of money involving
Chinese nationals and Indian Companies.
The three accused
arrested by the Enforcement Directorate were Hong Xuquan, interim Chief
Executive Officer of VIVO India; Harinder Dahiya, Chief Financial Officer of
VIVO India and Hemant Munjal, consultant for VIVO India (“the Three Accused”). However,
the Three Accused alleged that they were arrested on December 21st,
2023, and not on December 22nd, 2023, as stated by the ED and hence
they were not produced within the stipulated time of twenty-four (24) of the
arrest before the court, resulting to illegal custody. In response, the counsel
of the ED argued that the premises of the Three Accused were searched on
December 21st and thereafter they were taken to the office of ED for
questioning and were formally arrested only on December 22nd.
The trial court, after
observing the plea moved by the Three Accused challenging their arrest as
unsustainable and subsequent custody as illegal, non-est and void passed an order
on December 30th,
2023, directing their immediate release.
The ED aggrieved by
the order of the trial court approached the High Court of Delhi on Tuesday
January 02nd, 2024, challenging the release of the Three Accused
whereby the vacation judge of Delhi High Court bench listed the matter for Wednesday
January 03rd, 2024, and directed the Three Accused to file their
replies in a week to a plea by the ED challenging the trial court order for
Delhi (Head Office)
Plot No. 66, LGF, #TheHub, Okhla Phase III, Okhla Industrial Estate, New Delhi 110020, India.