Hemant Soren’s Enforcement Directorate remand extended till February 15 in land fraud case

A special PMLA court on Monday extended former Jharkhand Chief Minister Hemant Soren’s Enforcement Directorate (ED) remand for another three days in a money laundering case linked to a land fraud case.

Soren, who was arrested last month, will stay in ED remand till February 15.

On February 7, the court remanded Soren, who is also the Jharkhand Mukti Morcha (JMM) executive president, in five days of ED custody. Before that, the court granted five days of ED custody to the former Chief Minister on February 2.

The ED stated that Soren’s remand was necessary after the recovery of 17 original registers and 11 trunks of incriminating documents from the premises of former chief minister’s aide Bhanu Pratap Prasad, a revenue sub-inspector.

Prasad and Binod Singh, a businessman, are allegedly a part of the land-grabbing syndicate, according to the probe agency.

The ED also recovered a 201-page chat from electronic devices and mobile phone of Singh. The agency said that Soren was required to be confronted with the details that came out from the chat.

It has been learnt that Soren wanted to construct a banquet hall on the illegally occupied 8.5-acre plot located in Bargai circle of Ranchi district.

In its plea, the ED claimed that Soren had been reluctant to answer the question asked by its officials. The agency said Soren was unwilling to hand over his phone to the probe agency.

The ED wants Soren’s phone to verify the chats recovered from Singh’s phone.

Soren was arrested on January 31 after a seven-hour grilling by the ED in the money laundering case. He resigned as the Chief Minister before being arrested.

JMM leader and transport minister Champai Soren took over as the Chief Minister on February 2.

(with inputs from PTI)

Published By:

Prateek Chakraborty

Published On:

Feb 13, 2024

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