INDIA: The Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) arrested seven Eastern Coal field Limited (ECL) officials, including one serving and three retired general managers. ECL is a government-owned- Maharatna company based on coal mining and refining.
ECL’s former general manager, A Mallick, and current ECL manager, Mukesh Kumar, are arrested concerning the coal smuggling. Alongside, TMC MP Abhishek Banerjee and his wife Rujira Narula Banerjee are in connection with the scam. The anti-corruption branch arrested the officials on Wednesday. Investigative agencies doubt financial transactions of Rs 1,300 crore in the scam.
It is claimed that illegal coal mining took place at leasehold mines of ECL in Kunustoria and Kajora areas near Asansol. The CBI doubt that TMC leader Vinay Mishra is in connection with the scam. Mishra used to collect money on behalf of influential people. Later, they absconded with Rs. 1 Lakhs.
The Enforcement Directorate (ED) recovered assets worth Rs 9.28 from Mishra. Vinay’s brother Vikas and prime accused Anup Majhi came under the raider of anti-money laundering law. According to investigations, the black money was deposited in foreign bank accounts of these influential people, which were further transferred as white money.
CBI shared a piece of information from the interrogation, “They couldn’t give adequate answers to the questions asked. “They were unable to respond to the questions posed adequately. They were concealing several pieces of information, and we suspect they were actively involved in the scam. We arrested them as part of the investigation.”
The contradictories in the statement indicate a huge loophole. Illegal mining and coal smuggling is a widespread phenomenon in coal subsidiaries as it is considered a ‘black diamond’. The high-intensity interrogation is going on, and the CBI and ED are working hand in hand to figure out the main culprit of the scam.
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