Assets, deposits worth Rs 6 cr seized from Punjab Congress leader, others
The investigation stems from a Punjab Vigilance Bureau FIR related to the transportation and labour cartage policy of 2021
Assets and deposits worth over Rs 6 crore have been seized in searches against former Punjab minister and Congress leader Bharat Bhushan Ashu and some others as part of a probe linked to an alleged tender scam, the ED said on Saturday.
The raids were launched on August 24 in 25 in Punjab.
Besides Ashu’s premises, the Enforcement Directorate also searched those of Raman Balasubramanium, a former chairman of the Ludhiana Improvement Trust, and others.
The searches took place under the Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA).
Ashu, a former minister of food and civil supplies in Punjab, is now a working president of the Punjab Pradesh Congress Committee.
The agency said Rs 4.81 crore kept in multiple bank accounts of the searched persons and prima facie identified as proceeds of crime were frozen.
Also seized were five immovable properties worth about Rs 1.54 crore besides four bank lockers.
"Incriminating documents, digital devices and Indian currency of around Rs 30 lakh were also seized from various premises," it said.
The investigation stems from a Punjab Vigilance Bureau FIR related to the transportation and labour cartage policy, 2021, of the state government and complaints related to a LIT "scam" on allotment of plots to bogus persons, the ED said.
It was alleged that the tenders were allotted to contractors who approached then minister Ashu through Rakesh Kumar Singla, the Chairman of CVC, Food and Civil Supplies, the ED said.
"Through this favoritism, the allottee contractors got undue advantages causing loss to the government exchequer," it said.
(With agency inputs)