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ED raids multiple premises linked to Shiv Sena leader Arjun Khotkar in Rs 25,000 crore MSC Bank scam

As per sources cited in various news reports, the raids were conducted in connection with the Maharashtra State Co-operative Bank scam. Multiple teams of ED personnel reached various locations, including his Bhagyanagar bungalow in Jalna, linked to the leader at 8:30 am in morning.

The Enforcement Directorate on Friday raided multiple premises linked to Shiv Sena leader Arjun Khotkar in Aurangabad and nearby areas. Khotkar is the head of the Agriculture Produce Market Committee.

As per sources cited in various news reports, the raids were conducted in connection with the Maharashtra State Co-operative Bank scam. Multiple teams of ED personnel reached various locations, including his Bhagyanagar bungalow in Jalna, linked to the leader at 8:30 am in morning. Reports say a team of 12 people are still investigating his house in Jalna.

BJP leader Kiri Somaiya accused Khotkar, who had served as an MLA from Jalna and a minister in the Maharashtra government between 2016 to 2019, of usurping the land of 10,000 farmers.

However, sources close to the ED claim, the raids at Khotkar’s place were related to the earlier takedown of a senior Mumbai police officer’s father-in-law in Aurangabad. The raids were then carried out in connection with the purchase of a sugar mill by the officer’s relative.

Ajit Pawar and Sharad Pawar named in the Rs 25,000 crore MSCB scam

In the same case, the Enforcement Directorate in July 2021 had attached properties worth over Rs 65 crores, including a sugar mill in Satara, liked to Deputy Chief Minister Ajit Pawar and his wife. As per ED, the funds used to purchase the Jarandeshwar SSK sugar mill were routed through another sugar mill, which is in turn funded by Sparkling Soil Private Limited, a company linked to Deputy Chief Minister Ajit Pawar and his wife Sunetra Pawar. 

In September 2019, ahead of the assembly polls in Maharashtra, the Enforcement Directorate had registered a money laundering case against NCP chief Sharad Pawar and his nephew Ajit Pawar in connection with a Rs 25,000-crore scam at MSCB. During the investigation, the ED had found that MSCB sold Jarandeshwar SSK in 2010 in an auction at a lower price than fair value.

Other Shiv Sena leaders facing ED probe

Over the months, many Shiv Sena leaders have come under the scanner of the Enforcement Directorate. Earlier in August, ED raided premises linked to Sena MP Bhavana Gawali, a member of parliament from the Yavatmal Washim constituency of Maharashtra over a money laundering case. The ED suspected Bhawana of committing fraud and siphoning off funds through her firm named Mahila Utkarsh Pratisthan.

Another Shiv Sena leader Anil Parab is also facing an ED probe related to PMLA cases in connection with the Vasooli charges against former Home Minister Anil Deshmukh. 

Back in September 2021, ED had raided the residence of another Shiv Sena leader Anandrao Adsul. The Shiv Sena leader and his son Abhijeet Adsul are allegedly involved in a Rs 980-crore fraud at City Co-operative Bank.

Besides, Pratap Sarnaik was also pursued by ED sleuths for his alleged role in the ₹5600 crores National Spot Exchange Limited (NSEL) scam. The premier agency had seized 112 properties linked to Pratap Sarnaik. Interestingly, when ED verified the claims with the Revenue Departments Office, it found that the 112 plots, which it took in its possession, did not show up in the records.

Ayodhra Ram Mandir special coverage by OpIndia

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OpIndia Staffhttps://www.opindia.com
Staff reporter at OpIndia

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