Arrested NCP leader Chhagan Bhujbal to be produced in court

After grilling Bhujbal for over nine hours, the ED arrested him in a money laundering case

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Geetanjali Minhas | March 15, 2016 | Mumbai


#bhujbal money laundering   #enforcement directorate   #Chhagan Bhujbal   #Maharashtra Sadan scam  
NCP leader Chhagan Bhujbal
NCP leader Chhagan Bhujbal

Former Maharashtra deputy chief minister and senior NCP leader Chhagan Bhujbal, who was arrested on Monday evening by the Enforcement Directorate (ED), will be produced in a special PMLA court today. Since he is a sitting MLA, information of his arrest will be communicated to the speaker of the Maharashtra assembly.
 
After grilling Bhujbal for over nine hours, the ED arrested him in a money laundering case, which the agency claims caused a loss of Rs 870 crore to the exchequer. 
 
The ED is probing alleged kickback received by Bhujbal and his family members for awarding government projects to select contractors through companies owned by his family. These contracts were awarded from November 2004 to September 2014 when Bhujbal was that state PWD minister.
 
As per the ED, Bhujbal was non-committal on the sources of cash and claimed that the decision to award contracts during his tenure as PWD minister was taken by the cabinet sub-committee. “He was non-committal on the sources of cash. Since his answers were unsatisfactory, we arrested him,” said an ED officer.
 
According to the agency, Bhujbal was questioned on large sums of cash, allegedly laundered with the help of hawala operators into shell companies floated by his nephew Sameer and son Pankaj. Sameer has already been arrested and lodged in Arthur Road Jail. The ED has seized passports of Bhujbal and Pankaj.
 
The state anti-corruption bureau has already filed a chargesheet against Chhagan Bhujbal, Pankaj, Sameer and 14 others in the Maharashtra Sadan scam case, which was built at the cost of Rs 100 crore when Congress-NCP coalition was in power in Maharashtra.
 
ED had earlier brought out orders for attachment of three properties with an estimated worth of over Rs 280 crore in the case under money laundering laws and twice conducted searches at nine premises  including properties and offices  belonging to  Bhujbal, Pankaj, Samir and others.
 
 

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