FEMA violation: Lalit Modi’s lawyers want access to witnesses’ replies

New Delhi: Former Indian Premier League (IPL) chairman Lalit Modi’s lawyers have asked the Enforcement Directorate (ED) for the witnesses’ replies before their cross-examination in an alleged case of violation of the Foreign Exchange Management Act (FEMA).

“Since the cross-examination of the co-noticees will be a thorough scrutiny of what stand the co-noticees have taken in the matter and not just a memory recap or check, in all fairness, it is imperative for Lalit Modi lawyers to have the access to the replies filed by the co-noticees for their reference and conduct of effective cross-examination,” an official statement from Swadeep Singh Hora, counsellor of Lalit Modi, said.

The statement further read, “Modi’s lawyers have requested the Special Director of ED to provide the replies of all co-noticees to the concerned show cause notice.”

Last month, the Bombay High Court accepted former Modi’s plea to cross-examine the top officials of the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) who were in power in 2009.

Yesterday, the high court also allowed representatives of the BCCI to be present during the cross-examination of their erstwhile top officials by Modi’s counsels.

On July 20, 2011, the ED had issued show cause notices to Modi and the BCCI under provisions of FEMA regarding the alleged transfer of a sum of Rs 243.45 crore to Cricket South Africa without prior permission of the RBI ahead of an IPL tournament in 2009.

The ED was subsequently allowed by HC to summon several former BCCI officials, including then president Shashank Manohar and then secretary N Srinivasan, as witnesses in the matter.

The cross-examination of the concerned witnesses is scheduled to take place between March 1 and March 13.

The cross-examination will take place before Special Director, ED, who is the Adjudicating Authority under directions of the Bombay HC.