Former Maharashtra Home Minister Anil Deshmukh on Tuesday wrote to Enforcement Directorate (ED) requesting them to record his "statement on audio/visual mode of any nature of your choice at whatever time convenient".
ED had summoned Deshmukh to its office in Mumbai at 11 am for questioning today in connection with an alleged money laundering case.
In the letter, Tassine Sultan, Assistant Director, ED, the former Maharashtra Home Minister cited health issues as the reason for his inability to appear before the investigating agency.
Deshmukh also requested a copy of ECIR saying "so that I can tender effective assistance" and asked the ED to record his statement on the audio or visual mode at whatever time convenient.
"You have already recorded my statement for several hours on Jun 25 despite me being an old person of about 72 years of age suffering from various age-related ailments. On the earlier date of the search, I have been exposed to many ED officials without maintaining proper social distancing. On account of my age and health, I am vulnerable to contract COVID-19 disease," Deshmukh said.
The investigation agency had summoned the former Maharashtra Home Minister to its office on Saturday. However, he skipped the ED summon and sought a fresh date for appearance.
ED had already arrested Deshmukh's aides Kundan Shinde and Sanjeev Palande on Saturday in connection to the case.
The same day, the Special PMLA (Preventions of Money Laundering Act, 2002) court had sent Shinde and Palande to ED custody till July 1.
According to sources, the investigation has a money trail about how money was diverted from bar owners to trust which is connected to Deshmukh and his family.
Earlier today, Deshmukh's advocate Indrapal Singh said, "Summons says Deshmukh has to be present at 11 am. Summons say to appear with documents, however a list of documents not mentioned in the summons. We are asking for ECIR from ED and other lists of documents that ED wants from Deshmukh. I am going to the ED office to get the list of documents that ED needs. We are not moving for Anticipatory bail or High Court yet. We are cooperating with the investigating agencies."
Deshmukh in his letter to ED had said unless the ECIR was provided to him it will not be possible for him to appear before the investigating agency with documents.
"I am a law-abiding citizen and all the allegation levelled against me are false and baseless," he said.
Also Read: Money laundering case: Anil Deshmukh to appear before ED today