ED attaches Lalu’s kin land worth Rs 45 crore


Moving a step further to tighten the noose around the alleged benami properties of RJD supremo Lalu Prasad’s family, the Enforcement Directorate (ED) on Friday confiscated a prime land of three acres where Bihar’s biggest mall was to be constructed. The property in Patna, estimated to be priced at Rs 45 crore, was allegedly transferred to Lalu family following a deal of the sale of IRCTC hotels in Ranchi and Puri when Lalu was Railway Minister in the UPA-1 Government.

The ED officials announced about the attachment of the property even though the same property had been confiscated by the Income Tax earlier. The confiscation by the ED came a few days after the ED sleuths interrogated Lalu’s wife and former CM Rabri Devi and earlier her younger son and former Deputy CM Tejashwi Prasad Yadav. Rabri was questioned last Saturday for seven hours and most of the queries were related to this property but sources said she either did not reply or gave unconvincing replies.

Leader of Opposition in Bihar Assembly Tejashwi Yadav retaliated by saying that all the cases against him and other members of the family were politically motivated and the central agencies had been pressurised to file false cases against them in order to finish them politically.

“It’s now more than 150 days that I-T had filed FIR against us but still there is no charge-sheet. It is because the agency has no proof against us and it is struggling to collect some evidence.

Everybody knows under whose pressure the central agencies are working and who is misusing them for political ends,” said an enraged Tejashwi who also made fun of the attachment of the property by the ED. He said that I-T had already attached the same property and now ED was making similar claim. “Now they should fight out who confiscated it,” he reacted.

The three acre plot on the outskirts of Patna and close to Danapur came in the light when a soil scam was detected when Lalu’s eldest son ej Pratap Yadav was Forest and Environment Minister and the soil dug out from the plot had been sold to Patna Zoo without tender. Later it was detected that Patna’s biggest shopping mall was under construction there and the property was claimed to belong to Lara Project. Deputy CM Sushil Modi, who then was in opposition, brought to fore the documents of the property and he alleged that the land had been transferred to Lalu family after the deal for the sale of railway hotels was struck. First this land was transferred to Sarla Gupta, wife of former Union Minister and Lalu’s Man Friday Prem Chand Gupta, who later transferred it to Rabri and Tejashwi.

“We can’t be scared. We will not succumb. We did nothing wrong,” claimed Tejashwi and added that people of Bihar knew who was neck deep in scandals and why only Lalu family was being harassed. He alleged that Chief Minister Nitish Kumar was patronising all the scams and Sushil Modi was involved in them. 



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