The Enforcement Directorate (ED) on Friday raided a dozen locations in West Bengal and Jharkhand as part of a money laundering probe into alleged use of forged papers for sale of defence land in these states. The federal agency is searching about eight locations in Ranchi and adjoining areas, and multiple places in Kolkata, news agency PTI reported, citing officials.
The ED also searched premises of some real estate dealers, private persons and linked entities.
An ED official said the team visited the office of arrested businessman Amit Agarwal in Nonapukur in south Kolkata, and questioned two of his close aides for over an hour to ascertain if he held any other property in West Bengal, other than the places that the agency has raided.
The ED raid began at around 6:30 AM.
The probe stems from a Jharkhand Police FIR that was filed to investigate the forgery case. In October, Agarwal was arrested by the ED on charges of alleged conspiracy to “trap” Rajeev Kumar, a lawyer representing a petitioner in two PILs filed against Jharkhand Chief Minister Hemant Soren.
The case also has relation to the alleged illegal mining case that is being probed by the ED. The central probe agency had recently summoned the Jharkhand CM for questioning in the case. Three people have been arrested in connection with the case, including one of the CM’s aides and two others.