Railway Hotels PMLA Case: Tejashwi Yadav Appears Before ED:- The officials said, in connection with its money laundering probe in the railway hotels allotment corruption case, Tejashwi Yadav, the son of RJD chief Lalu Prasad, on Tuesday appeared before the Enforcement Directorate.
The officials said, the former Bihar CM arrived at the central probe agency’s office, where it is expected that the investigating officer of the case will record his statement. Under the provisions of the Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA), a criminal case had been registered against the Lalu Prasad family members and others.
Earlier, few people in this case including the wife of former UPA Minister P C Gupta were questioned by the ED. On Wednesday, the ED had summoned Tejashwi’s mother and former state chief minister Rabri Devi.
To initiate its own criminal complaint, the agency had taken cognisance of a CBI FIR in this regard.
A criminal FIR has been registered by the CBI in July and conducted multiple searches against former Bihar chief minister Lalu Prasad and others. The officials had said, the alleged “proceeds of crime” generated by the accused, purportedly through shell companies, will be investigated by the ED. Under charges filed in the Enforcement Case Information Report (ECIR), Rabri Devi, Tejashwi Yadav, and others will be probed by the agency. The ECIR is ED is equivalent of a police FIR.
The case dates back to the time when Lalu was the railway minister in the UPA government. Vijay Kochhar, Vinay Kochhar (both directors of Sujata Hotels), Delight Marketing company, now known as Lara Projects, and the then IRCTC managing director P K Goel are the other names included in the CBI FIR.
After receiving a bribe in the form of prime land in Patna through a ‘benami’ company owned by Sarla Gupta, Lalu Prasad handed over the maintenance of two IRCTC hotels to a company alleged the CBI. Lalu was the then railway minister. The FIR was registered on July 5, in connection with granting a contract. The contract was given for the maintenance of the hotels in Ranchi and Puri and favors allegedly extended to Sujata Hotels. Moreover, on receiving premium land as ‘quid pro quo’.
The powers to attach and confiscate tainted assets is held by the ED, under the PMLA. It is expected that the agency once it makes progress in the case, will initiate such a move.