BENGALUTRU: The Karnataka high court on Wednesday asked the Enforcement Directorare (ED) to disclose under what power or authority of law did it direct banks to freeze accounts pertaining to Indians for Amnesty International Trust, the India branch of Amnesty International.
Justice PS Dinesh Kumar gave the direction while pointing out that even the copy of the said order was not furnished to the petitioner by the bank, citing confidentiality. Bank transaction is a fundamental right of the petitioner, he said. The trust, while challenging the August 25 communication by ED to the banks, has claimed that it was continuously harassed and a provisional order was passed on November 26, freezing certain bank accounts.
The petitioner contended that there is gross violation of provisions of PMLA as no orders were passed or matters taken to adjudicating authority within 30 days of seizure. However, to a pointed query by the court, the petitioner’s counsel clarified that five accounts have not been attached.
The central government counsel clarified that the activities of the petitioner have been under watch for the past eight years. He said the petitioner has alternative remedy available, before the adjudicating authority and then appellate authority under PMLA.
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