"Deteriorated India-China Ties Doesn't Mean...": Lava Boss Seeks Bail

The managing director of phone maker Lava has been arrested with others under the provisions of the Prevention of Money Laundering Act.

'Deteriorated India-China Ties Doesn't Mean...': Lava Boss Seeks Bail

Hari Om Rai met with the CEO of Vivo China in 2013, his lawyer said (File)

New Delhi:

Hari Om Rai, the arrested managing director of Lava International Company, told a Delhi court on Wednesday that just because the Sino-India relations have deteriorated over the years, it would not mean that he committed an offence at a time when there were, in fact, friendly business relations between the two countries.

The accused, arrested in a money laundering case against Chinese phone maker Vivo, made the submissions through his lawyer before Special Judge Tarun Yogesh during the hearing of his bail application.

The judge posted the matter for further hearing on December 4.

Advocates Vikram Chaudhary and Nitesh Rana, appearing for the accused, told the court that the accused has no direct or indirect control over Vivo's business.

"He has not derived any monetary benefit, nor has he engaged in any transaction with Vivo or any entity allegedly related to Vivo, let alone having been associated with any alleged 'proceeds of crime'," the counsel told the court.

Nitesh Rana further submitted that since Vivo China wanted to enter India, Mr Rai met with Shen Wei, CEO of Vivo China, in 2013.

"At that time, Vivo and Lava were contemplating a joint venture where 25 per cent shares would be held by Lava. However, this eventually never fructified and Vivo decided to independently conduct its business in India," the counsel told the court.

The plea further stated that negotiations and business talks between the applicant and the representatives of Vivo China failed and did not meet a fruitful end due to which the applicant stopped pursuing the said opportunity and had nothing to do with Vivo China and/or its representatives after 2014, the counsel submitted.

"Merely because, over the years, the international relations between India and China have deteriorated, it would not mean that the applicant committed an offence at the relevant time when there were, in fact, friendly business relations between the two countries," the counsel told the court.

Mr Rai has been arrested with a few others under the provisions of the Prevention of Money Laundering Act.

The ED has alleged that Vivo "illegally" transferred Rs 62,476 crore to China in order to avoid payment of taxes in India.

(Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is published from a syndicated feed.)

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