New Delhi: The Supreme Court on Wednesday directed self-proclaimed godman Chandraswami to deposit Rs 25 lakh within a week as the first tranche of penalty in several FEMA violation cases registered by the Enforcement Directorate.
A vacation bench of justices B S Chauhan and Swatanter Kumar directed Chandraswami and his associate Vikram Singh to deposit the money in the four matters in which ED has slapped a penalty.
The ED has imposed a total penalty of Rs 9 crores (approx) on Chandraswami in 13 cases of FEMA violations for acquiring foreign exchange in contravention of the Act.
During the proceedings, the bench said he, Chandraswami, has to pay more than Rs 8 crore and asked from his counsel whether he would pay the penalty or not.
"You have to deposit more than Rs 8 crores... tell us, whether you would deposit it or not," the bench said.
To this, his counsel assured the apex court that he would deposit the rest amount soon but to pay the entire amount in one go "would be extreme hardship" for him.
The court then directed Chandraswami to deposit Rs 25 lakhs and posted the matter in the second week of July for hearing.
The apex court's direction came on an application filed by Chandraswami seeking extension of time for payment of the penalty imposed by ED.
Earlier, the Appellate Tribunal for Foreign Exchange had directed Swami to pay Rs 9 crore, the total amount of the penalty as a pre-condition to hear his case challenging the penalty imposed by ED.
This was later challenged by him before the Delhi High Court which dismissed the appeal, following which he had approached the apex court.