New Delhi India], October 14: The Enforcement Directorate (ED) on Friday attached assets worth Rs 5.6 crore in connection with its money laundering probe against Himachal Pradesh Chief Minister Virbhadra Singh and his family.
This comes a day after the enforcement directorate announced dates for the forthcoming Assembly polls in his state.
The ED investigation team said the assets, both movable and immovable, are in the name of the Chief Minister’s son Vikramaditya Singh, daughter Aprajita Singh and wife Pratibha Singh.
Meanwhile, the ED said it has issued a provisional order of attachment under the provisions of the Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA).
The statement said, “This order attaches Rs. 4.2 crore from a portion of farmhouse at Dera Mandi in Delhi in the name of Tarini International and fixed assets of Tarini Infra Damanganga project at Vapi in Gujarat. Also, shares worth Rs. 64 lakh in the name of Vikramaditya Singh and Aprajita Singh and fixed deposits to the tune of Rs. 20 lakh in bank account of Aprajita Singh”.
“Since the shares of Tarini Infra were transferred by Pratibha Singh to daughter of Vakamulla Chandrashekar for a consideration of Rs. 60 lakh, the same also stands attached from the FD of Pratibha Singh with various bank accounts at Delhi and Shimla. Also, Chandrashekar is the promoter/director of Tarini Group of Companies, which is engaged in hydro power projects in Himachal Pradesh, thereby alleging a quid pro quo between the two parties,” the statement added.
“During investigations the trail of funds passing through Chandershekhar, it was revealed that an amount of Rs 5.9 crore was given by him to Virbhadra Singh and his family members through his three personal bank accounts. When the source of funds was enquired into, it came to light that the said amount was received through web of firms indulging in accommodation entry operation,” the ED alleged.
The ED said the probe found these alleged shell firms were opened in the name of employees with meager salary primarily for providing accommodation entries and the addresses of the firms were fake. A total of Rs 40 crore (market value) assets have been attached by it in this case till now.
The CBI has also filed a charge sheet against Singh, a six-time Chief Minister, his wife and others for allegedly amassing assets worth around Rs 10 crore disproportionate to their known sources of income.
An attachment order issued by the ED under the PMLA is aimed to deprive the accused from taking benefits of his or her ill-gotten wealth and it can be challenged before the Adjudicating Authority of the said Act within 180 days.
Further investigation is in progress.