A land parcel worth Rs 6 crore in Kolkata has been attached by the Enforcement Directorate in connection with an illegal coal mining case in West Bengal, the central agency said on Saturday.
The case was filed under criminal sections of the Prevention of Money Laundering Act by the agency after studying a November 2020 FIR of the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) that alleged a multi-crore coal pilferage scam related to the Eastern Coalfields Ltd's mines in the state's Kunustoria and Kajora areas in and around Asansol.
Local state operative Anup Majhi alias Lala is alleged to be the prime suspect in the case.
The Enforcement Directorate (ED) had claimed that the family of Trinamool Congress national general secretary and Diamond Harbour MP Abhishek Banerjee was a beneficiary of funds obtained from this illegal trade. Abhishek Banerjee is the nephew of West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee.
The agency issued a statement to say that the land attached by it is jointly owned by West End Pigments and Chemicals Pvt Ltd and Deshpran Properties Ltd, and it is located at Despran Shasmal Road in Kolkata. The ED claimed that probe found "that an advance of Rs 6 crore for the purchase of this property was transferred from the account of LTB Infraconsultants Pvt Ltd."
"The source of the said fund was from proceeds of crime which was deposited in cash into the bank accounts of LTB Infraconsultants Pvt Ltd, which is owned by Vinay Mishra and Vikas Mishra," it alleged.
Vikas Mishra was arrested in the case earlier by the ED and he is the brother of Trinamool Congress youth wing leader Vinay Mishra who is stated to have left the country sometime back and probably has also renounced his Indian citizenship.
The former inspector in-charge of Bankura police station, Ashok Kumar Mishra, was also arrested by the agency in the case.
With the latest action, the total attachment of properties in this case stands at Rs 171.86 crore.
The ED had earlier claimed that the Mishra brothers received "proceeds of crime worth Rs 730 crore on behalf of some influential persons and for themselves" in this case involving an estimated amount of Rs 1,352 crore.
A "deep system" of political patronage and a "well-oiled" machinery was used to brazenly carry out certain unlawful coal minings in West Bengal, the ED has claimed while seeking the remand of Inspector Mishra in April.
A chargesheet was also filed by the ED in May this year.
(Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is published from a syndicated feed.)