A portion of a nine-storey building in Mumbai's Bandra area, valued Rs 16.38 crore, has been attached by the Enforcement Directorate in connection with its money-laundering probe against the Congress-promoted Associated Journals Limited (AJL).
The federal probe agency said it has issued a provisional order, under the Prevention of Money Laundering Act, to freeze "part" of the asset and has issued notices to AJL and its chief, veteran Congress leader Moti Lal Vora.
The AJL is controlled by senior Congress leaders, including members of the Gandhi family. The group runs the National Herald newspaper.
The nine-floor building has two basements and a total built-up area of 15,000 sq metres, it said, adding its total value is Rs120 crore.
The building is located at plot no 2, survey no 341, near Kala Nagar, EPF office, Bandra (East).
The agency alleged that the accused in this case, that includes former Haryana chief minister and Congress leader Bhupinder Singh Hooda and Mr Vora, "used the proceeds of crime" in the form of a plot allotted "illegally" to AJL in Panchkula and pledged it to avail loan from the Syndicate Bank branch on Bahadur Shah Zafar Marg in Delhi to construct this building in Bandra.
"Thus, the said asset at Mumbai that germinated out of the proceeds of crime has been attached to the extent of Rs16.38 crore. Further investigation is going on," the agency said.
The Panchkula plot has already been attached by the ED, and Mr Hooda and Mr Vora have been questioned by it in the case. The plot at C-17, Sector-6 was allotted to AJL first in 1982 by the Haryana government.