A Delhi court on Monday reserved its order on a plea of businessman Ratul Puri, seeking cancellation of a non-bailable warrant (NBW) against him in a money laundering case connected to the Rs 3,600-crore AgustaWestland VVIP chopper scam.
Special CBI Judge Arvind Kumar, after hearing the arguments put forth by the prosecution and defence, decided to pronounce the order on August 21.
During the proceedings, Special Public Prosecutor DP Singh, appearing for the Enforcement Directorate (ED), opposed the plea and said that the agency had summoned Puri today, but he did not appear before them.
"We have been trying to call him since yesterday," he contended.
Advocate Vijay Aggarwal, representing Puri, argued that his client is willing to join the ED probe.
"They (ED) emailed him today at 11.55 am and called him at 1 pm. This is unfair. How can a person come to join investigation in such a short notice time?" he asked.
The court had on August 9 allowed a plea of the ED, seeking issuance of an NBW against Puri.
The agency accused him of not joining the probe despite several summonses.
The court will hear on August 22 another application moved by Puri, challenging some of the grounds mentioned in the ED's application for issuance of the NBW against him.
Puri, a nephew of Madhya Pradesh Chief Minister Kamal Nath, had on August 16 filed the plea for cancellation of the NBW by contending that he is willing to join the probe.
The businessman had submitted that he sent a mail to the agency showing his willingness to join the investigation.
On August 14, the Delhi High Court had granted Puri interim protection from arrest till August 20.
The case pertains to alleged irregularities in the purchase of 12 VVIP choppers from Italy-based Finmeccca's British subsidiary AgustaWestland.
The deal was scrapped by the NDA government in 2014 over the alleged breach of contractual obligations and charges of payment of kickbacks for securing the deal.
( With inputs from ANI )