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Tamil Nadu Challenges ED’s Jurisdiction

The Tamil Nadu Government has taken a defiant stance against the Enforcement Directorate’s (ED) probe into alleged illegal sand mining, prompting a legal showdown in the Supreme Court. Asserting that the ED lacks jurisdiction under the Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA) to investigate sand mining, Tamil Nadu’s counsel, senior advocates Kapil Sibal and Amit Anand Tiwari, argued firmly before the court.

They highlighted that sand mining is not listed as a scheduled offence under the PMLA, questioning the legality of the ED’s summons to District Collectors. Additionally, they accused the State of intervening in the Madras High Court to obstruct the ED’s investigation, accusing it of siding with the sand mafia. The ED countered, accusing the Tamil Nadu Government of impeding its lawful investigation and pressuring officials not to cooperate.

The Supreme Court engaged in a rigorous examination of the legalities, questioning the necessity of the State’s intervention and emphasizing compliance with parliamentary laws. The case, marked by a tug-of-war between the ED and the Tamil Nadu Government, underscores the complexities surrounding jurisdiction and federalism.

Despite the ED’s efforts to unearth the nexus behind illegal mining, the legal battle continues, with the court listing further hearings on the matter. The ED’s seizure of significant assets and its estimation of the value of excess sand mining in Tamil Nadu add layers to the ongoing dispute. As the legal saga unfolds, the outcome will shape the landscape of jurisdictional authority and accountability in India’s legal system.