ED Links Mamata Banerjee’s Nephew Abhishek to Coal Mining Scam; Alleges His Family Received Funds

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The ED has alleged West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee’s nephew and TMC MP Abhishek Banerjee’s household benefited from illicit funds obtained from sure unlawful coal mining within the state below a “deep system” of political patronage pushed by a “well-oiled” equipment. The Enforcement Directorate (ED) made these claims Wednesday in a remand observe offered earlier than a particular court docket in search of enhanced custody of West Bengal police officer Ashok Kumar Mishra, additionally the inspector in-charge of Bankura police station.

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The police officer, aside from TMC youth wing chief Vinay Mishra’s brother Vikas Mishra, was arrested by the ED in a case which has native dealer Anup Majhi alias Lala because the prime suspect. The inspector was arrested by the ED right here on April 3 and the court docket had despatched him to custody until Wednesday. The court docket prolonged his ED remand until April 12.

The ED case below the Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA) was filed after learning a November, 2020 FIR of the CBI alleging a multi-crore coal pilferage rip-off associated to the Eastern Coalfields Ltd mines within the state’s Kunustoria and Kajora areas in and round Asansol. The ED, within the remand observe, alleged that sure unlawful mining cases have been flourishing within the state below the “patronage” of the political get together in energy. The company linked the policeman to Majhi, Vinay and Vikas Mishra, going up all the way in which to the Abhishek Banerjee’s household.

The Diamond Harbour MP has denied these allegations. All coal property fall straight below Centre and are guarded by the Central companies. If BJP thinks TMC leaders obtained cash from these illegally working the coal property, then what’s stopping Centre from investigating all culprits who failed to handle these nationwide property? he had tweeted earlier this week. He added, “Also it is ABSOLUTELY HILARIOUS that according to BJP, Coal Ministry and Home Ministry officials were more keenly following TMC leaders’ orders than listening to their own bosses’ (Read Modi-Shah’s) commands! Whom are you fooling.” The ED mentioned paperwork seized from Majhi and Niraj Singh confirmed the previous had “maintained detailed coded records in the form of payments made to various entities from the proceeds of crime generated from illegal coal mining”.

“…it is further revealed that in a span of less than 2 years, an amount to the tune of Rs 1,352 crore has been illegally generated by Majhi through illegal coal mining,” the company claimed. “Investigation also revealed a deep system of political patronage and well-oiled network by which the system was subverted to carry out these illegal activities in a brazen manner.” Quoting the recorded assertion of an unidentified “close associate” of Majhi, the ED mentioned the alleged kingpin of this coal pilferage rip-off did his “illegal coal mining business smoothly by managing senior functionaries of the political party of West Bengal though Inspector Mishra.” The assertion of the unidentified “witness” added, “it is known fact that Vinay Mishra collected money from illegal coal mining of Majhi and his associates for his closely associated political boss in present ruling party; that Vinay Mishra is youth leader of TMC and he is very close to Abhishek Banerjee and that he (Vinay Mishra) is the eyes and ears of Abhishek Banerjee.” The ED additionally annexed the recorded assertion of the Inspector the place he allegedly said that “Vinay Mishra was the secretary of TMC and was very close to Member of Parliament Abhishek Banerjee.” The policeman advised the ED that he as soon as transferred about Rs 1-1.5 from the state to Delhi allegedly on the instructions of Vinay Mishra and this was executed below political strain and figuring out his (Vinay Mishra) clout within the get together, he (Inspector Mishra) has to obey him or his profession will probably be completed.

“He (Inspector Mishra) facilitated in transferring funds through a non-banking channel from India to London for a close relative of Shri Abhishek Banerjee and the funds were transferred by Niraj Singh (Majhi’s accountant).” “The message regarding funds transfer to Thailand from India was forwarded to him either by Vikas or Niraj Singh and that the subject transaction of Thailand was related to Rujira Banerjee who is the close relative (wife) of Abhishek Banerjee,” the ED mentioned quoting the assertion recorded by it of Inspector Mishra. According to the scheme below the felony provisions of the PMLA, an announcement made throughout investigation below the mentioned legislation is admissible within the court docket.

The company claimed that paperwork it seized present that “Majhi assisted in transferring substantial funds derived from the proceeds of crime to Shri Abhishek Banerjee’s close relative (wife and sister-in-law) at London and Thailand.” The ED alleged the police Inspector “became the part of evil axis of coal mafia, corrupt politicians and corrupt government servants…and evidence is there about him receiving tainted funds of Rs 168 crore in just 109 days from Majhi and for his political bosses including Vinay Mishra and for himself.” “He is a government official but worked closely with the coal mafia and involved in transferring the tainted funds collected from illegal coal mining business to the overseas bank accounts of politically influential persons and their close family members of West Bengal,” the ED alleged. The case has picked up political hyperlinks after Abhishek Banerjee’s spouse Rujira was questioned by the CBI a while again. The state is within the midst of an eight-phase polling for its 294-seat meeting.

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