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New Delhi: Assets worth Rs 4.81 crore of the family and companies “beneficially owned and controlled” by Delhi minister and AAP leader Satyendra Jain have been provisionally attached in connection with a money-laundering probe against him, the Enforcement Directorate said on Tuesday.
Jain, 57, is the minister for health, power, home, PWD, industries, urban development, flood, irrigation and water in the Arvind Kejriwal-led government.
The ED had in 2018 questioned the AAP MLA from Shakur Basti in connection with the case. He had worked in the Central Public Works Department and later quit his job to set up an architectural consultancy firm.
In a statement, the ED said it had issued a provisional order under the Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA) for the attachment of the assets.
The “attached immovable properties worth Rs 4.81 crore belong to Akinchan Developers Pvt. Ltd., Indo Metal Impex Pvt Ltd, Paryas Infosolutions Pvt. Ltd., Manglayatan Projects Pvt. Ltd., J.J. Ideal Estate Pvt. Ltd., Swati Jain, wife of Vaibhav Jain, Sushila Jain, wife of Ajit Prasad Jain, and Indu Jain, wife of Sunil Jain”.
The probe found that “during the period 2015-16, when Satyendra Kumar Jain was a public servant, the companies beneficially owned and controlled by him received accommodation entries to the tune of Rs 4.81 crore from shell (paper) companies against cash transferred to Kolkata-based entry operators through the hawala route”.
“These amounts were utilised for direct purchase of land or for repayment of loan taken for the purchase of agricultural land in and around Delhi,” the ED said.
According to the officials, the named persons in the attachment order are associates and family members of Jain.
The money laundering case against the AAP minister stems from an August 2017 FIR filed by the CBI against him and others on charges of alleged possession of disproportionate assets.
The CBI has claimed that Jain purchased 200 bighas of agricultural land in the names of companies controlled by him in Delhi in five years preceding 2018 and “laundered black money” to the tune of several crores of rupees.
It had alleged that Jain controlled these companies in the past either in the form of being one of the directors or by holding one-third of shares of these companies in his name or in the names of his family members or others.
The laundered funds were allegedly used to purchase over 200 bighas of land in Auchandi, Bawana, Karala and Mohammed Mazvi villages in Delhi between 2010-16, the CBI had said.
The Income Tax department too had probed these transactions and issued an order attaching ‘benami assets’ allegedly linked to Jain.
Kejriwal in February said that he had learnt from sources the ED was going to arrest Satyendra Jain just before the Punjab assembly elections and accused the Union government of targeting the Aam Aadmi Party after realising the BJP “would lose” the polls.
The AAP won the Punjab assembly polls in March and has formed its government in the border state with Bhagwant Mann as the chief minister.