Congress leader Baba Siddique’s house was raided today by the Enforcement Directorate (ED) in connection with the Rs 400 crore Slum Rehabilitation Authority (SRA) scam. The Enforcement Directorate has raided 5 locations including the Congress leader’s residence, according to a Republic TV report. News channel NDTV has reported that the raids were in connection with a money laundering case but there have not been any official confirmation of this as of now.
According to the Indian Express, over 500 slum dwellers in Mumbai were forced to vacate the slums after they were promised permanent houses in 2008. Construction on the plot on which the residences for the evicted slum dwellers had not begun till March 2016, according to an Indian Express report.
The land had been awarded to K S Chamankar for redevelopment by the then Maharashtra Deputy Chief Minister and Public Works Department (PWD) Minister Chhagan Bhujbal. Bhujbal had not invited tenders for the project. Chamankar had been awarded the contract on the promise that he would build a Regional Transport Office (RTO) in Andheri West. The contract had been given in 2005, according to an Indian Express report.
Chhagan Bhujbal is currently lodged in the Arthur Road Jail in Mumbai over allegations of extending favours to contractors in the construction of the Maharashtra Sadan building in New Delhi and for the Kalina Central Library in Mumbai. The ED claims that these projects have cost the state exchequer Rs 887 crore. ED also claimed that the financial trail shows Bhujbal may have made as much as Rs 225 crore through these two contracts, according to an Indian Express report.