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Enforcement Directorate makes third arrest in West Bengal coal mining scam case

This is the third arrest in the case. Earlier, two police officials of West Bengal Police department were placed under arrest and a chargesheet was also filed against them in 2021.

Sheenu Sharma Edited by: Sheenu Sharma @20Sheenu New Delhi Published on: May 28, 2022 9:03 IST
Enforcement Directorate makes third arrest in West Bengal coal mining scam case, latest national new
Image Source : PTI/ REPRESENTATIONAL (FILE).

ED makes third arrest in West Bengal coal mining scam case.

Highlights

  • ED on Friday said it has arrested a person in connection with a money laundering case
  • The case is pertaining to illegal coal mining in West Bengal
  • This is the third arrest in the case

The Enforcement Directorate (ED) on Friday (May 27) said it has arrested a person in connection with a money laundering case pertaining to illegal coal mining in West Bengal.

This is the third arrest in the case. Earlier, two police officials of West Bengal Police department were placed under arrest and a chargesheet was also filed against them in 2021.

A senior ED official said the accused Gurupada Maji was placed under arrest as per section 19(1) of the Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA).

The ED produced Maji at Rouse Avenue Court on Friday. The court sent him to seven-day custodial remand.

"He is one of the partners of Anup Majee, the kingpin of illegal coal mining business activities in West Bengal. Maji has received more than Rs 66 crore from the proceeds of crime generated through illegal coal mining business from Majee and his associates. Further, he had provided Rs 26 crore in cash to a Kolkata-based chartered accountant for arranging shell companies for the purpose of taking accommodation entries," said the ED official.

Know more about Gurupada Maji: 

The official added that Maji had acquired 13 shell companies with the help of the above Kolkata-based chartered accountant.

The net worth of these 13 shell companies is more than Rs 28 crore but he acquired these companies after paying only Rs 88 lakh on paper to respective shareholders, thereby managing to bring illegally generated cash in financial system.

Who were arrested earlier in the case? 

Vikas Mishra, brother of TMC youth wing leader Vinay Mishra, and former inspector in-charge of the Bankura police station Ashok Kumar Mishra were arrested on March 16, 2021, and April 3, 2021 respectively.

In this case, one prosecution complaint (charge sheet) was also filed on May 13, 2021, against both the accused.

Abhishek Banerjee, TMC MP and nephew of West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee, has been questioned in this case by the ED even as his wife Rujira was summoned.

Maji "received more than Rs 66 crore from the proceeds of crime generated through illegal coal mining business from Anup Majee alias Lala and his associates", the ED said.

"He had provided about Rs 26 crore in cash to a Kolkata-based CA for arranging shell companies for the purpose of taking accommodation entries," the agency said.

This ED case of money laundering stems from a November, 2020 FIR registered by the CBI that alleged a multi-crore-rupee coal pilferage scam related to Eastern Coalfields Limited mines in West Bengal's Kunustoria and Kajora areas in and around Asansol.

A charge sheet was filed by the ED in the case during May last year.

The agency has said that the total proceeds of crime in the case stands at Rs 1,352 crore and it has attached assets of Rs 180 crore till now.

(With agencies inputs) 

 
 

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