In this post, we will discuss about the quid pro quo allegations against the Deputy Director of the Enforcement Directorate Niranjan Singh for misusing his position in a case involving singer Diljit Dosanjh.

ED’s Niranjan Singh ‘Charge-Sheeted’ over Diljit Show at Daughter’s wedding
ED’s Niranjan Singh ‘Charge-Sheeted’ over Diljit Show at Daughter’s wedding

Facts of the case: Mr. Niranjan Singh was the Deputy Director of the Enforcement Directorate who has served in the ED for over 30 years. He has investigated the infamous Bhola Drug case and has solved various cases related to Foreign Exchange Management Act (FEMA) including the RS. 800 crore nexus. He retired from his office on Monday, 31st May 2021. In this case, he has been charge sheeted in a departmental inquiry in connection with the Punjabi singer Diljit Dosanjh’s performance at his daughter’s wedding held in 2016. He paid Rs. 2 Lakh to Diljit for his performance in his daughter’s wedding even as he investigated FEMA violations against Diljit at that time. In 2017 only the ED had issued a show cause notice to Dosanjh for violation of  FEMA. In 2018, Niranjan was cross examined in the Bhola Drug case where the defense counsel also questioned over the expenditure incurred on his daughter’s marriage in 2016. The defense counsel also stated that Diljit usually charges Rs. 40 Lakh for a performance.

Law on the topic: It’s been said that Mr. Niranjan Singh has failed to maintain absolute integrity and misused his position which exhibited conduct of unbecoming of a government and contravened the provisions of rules of Central Civil Services Conduct Rules 1964.

Legal Opinion: In my point of view, I stand with Mr. Niranjan Singh. I don’t think he should be held responsible as I do not think that he misused his power and failed to maintain absolute integrity as he stated the fact that the FEMA case against Diljit which was handled by Mr. Niranjan Singh had been transferred to some other investigating officer in 2015 and the wedding of Niranjan’s daughter took place in 2016. Also the ED started this inquiry in 2016 and I think that he has been charge sheeted only because of the personal grudge of ED as he had approached the Punjab and Haryana High Court against the agency in several cases as stated by him.

Conclusion: This case has not been decided upon as Mr. Niranjan has only been charge sheeted. As per the view point of Niranjan he states that it’s only a notice of inquiry and not a charge sheet that the department has served to which after inquiry he will reply to it. Therefore, it was concluded that the Joint Director; Dr. Girish Bali who was presented at the wedding ceremony of Mr. Niranjan’s daughter has been made the eye witness to this case and only upon his statement the case would be proceeded further.

This post is written by A. Thiruthi.