“Unexplained” cash of Rs 2.85 crore and 133 gold coins were seized after raids were conducted at the premises of Delhi minister Satyendar Jain and his alleged associates as part of a money-laundering probe against them, the ED said Tuesday.
The Enforcement Directorate (ED) said those raided on Monday “either directly or indirectly assisted (the minister) or participated in the process of money laundering”.
The cash and coins were “unexplained” and were kept in a “secret” place, it said in a statement.
Jain, 57, was arrested on May 30 under the criminal sections of the Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA) and is in ED custody till June 9.
The ED had conducted searches at about 7 premises, including that of a jeweller, in Delhi and some neighbouring locations on Monday.
Jain, a minister without portfolio in the Arvind Kejriwal government, is being probed by the federal agency under the PMLA on charges of alleged hawala dealings.
Kejriwal recently had defended Jain as a “hardcore honest and patriot” person who was being framed in a “false case” and hoped the minister will come out clean after the ED probe.
The agency said those raided include Jain’s wife Poonam Jain, his business associates Ankush Jain and Vaibhav Jain, Naveen Jain and Siddharth Jain (directors of Ram Prakash Jewellers Pvt Ltd), G S Matharoo (chairman of Lala Sher Singh Jivan Vigyan Trust which runs Prudence group of schools), Yogesh Kumar Jain (director in Ram Prakash Jewellers Pvt Ltd.), father-in-law of Ankush Jain and Lala Sher Singh Jivan Vigyan Trust.
“Lala Sher Singh Jivan Vigyan Trust had provided accommodation entries for transfer of land from company beneficially owned by Satyendar Kumar Jain to family members of accomplices in order to alienate the property and to frustrate the process of confiscation,” the ED said.
It said “incriminating documents and digital records” were seized during the raids.
“Cash amounting to Rs 2.85 crore and 133 gold coins weighing 1.80 kg in total from unexplained source were found to be secreted in the said premises and were seized under PMLA,” it said.
In April, the ED had attached assets worth Rs 4.81 crore of Jain’s family and companies “beneficially owned and controlled” by him as part of the probe.
In a statement issued then, the ED had said a provisional order was brought out under the PMLA to “attach immovable properties worth Rs 4.81 crore belonging to Akinchan Developers Pvt. Ltd., Indo Metal Impex Pvt Ltd, Paryas Infosolutions Pvt. Ltd., Manglayatan Projects Pvt. Ltd., J.J. Ideal Estate Pvt. Ltd., Swati Jain, wife of Vaibhav Jain, Sushila Jain, wife of Ajit Prasad Jain, and Indu Jain, wife of Sunil Jain.”
The probe found that “during the period 2015-16, when Satyendar Kumar Jain was a public servant, the companies beneficially owned and controlled by him received accommodation entries to the tune of Rs 4.81 crore from shell (paper) companies against cash transferred to Kolkata-based entry operators through the hawala route”.
“These amounts were utilised for direct purchase of land or for repayment of loan taken for the purchase of agricultural land in and around Delhi,” the ED said.
The named persons in the attachment order are associates and family members of Jain, officials had said.
The money laundering case against the AAP minister stems from an August 2017 FIR filed by the CBI against him and others on charges of alleged possession of disproportionate assets (DA).
A charge sheet was filed by the CBI in December, 2018 stating that the alleged DA was to the tune of Rs 1.47 crore, about 217 per cent more than his known sources of income, during 2015-17.
The Income Tax Department too had probed these transactions and had issued an order attaching “benami assets” allegedly linked to Jain.