Abhishek’s links with firm tied to laundering unearthed: ED

Thursday 31st August 2023 07:24 EDT

New Delhi: The Enforcement Directorate said searches conducted last week in Kolkata found alleged links of Trinamool Congress MP Abhishek Banerjee, CM Mamata Banerjee’s nephew, with a company involved in laundering the proceeds of crime in the teachers’ recruitment scam.

“During the search operations, various incriminating documents and digital evidence were seized. One of the accused, Sujay Krishna Bhadra, was the chief operating officer of Leaps and Bounds Pvt Ltd, a company used for making dubious transactions running into millions of rupees,” the ED said.

Further, the agency said its investigation found that Abhishek was the chief executive officer of Leaps and Bounds Pvt Ltd and was also a director in the company from April 2012 to January 2014.

The ED arrested Bhadra on May 30 and a chargesheet was filed against him with details of the alleged conspiracy and involvement of TMC leaders. Abhishek failed to get any concession from the Supreme Court against the ED probe when he appealed for stalling the investigation. The agency has so far arrested seven people in the teachers’ recruitment scam, including former education minister Partha Chatterjee, Arpita Mukherjee, Manik Bhattacharya, TMC MLA and ex-president of West Bengal Board of Primary Education Kuntal Ghosh, Santanu Banerjee and Ayan Sil.

The ED conducted searches at three premises in Kolkata linked to Bhadra last week. He was the COO of Leaps and Bounds Pvt Ltd between April 2012 and March 2016, coinciding with the term of Abhishek Banerjee as CEO and director till 2014.
The agency has filed four chargesheets in the teachers’ recruitment scam case, including one against Bhadra on July 28. A special PMLA court has also taken cognisance of the supplementary chargesheet after finding a prima facie case against the accused, the agency said. The ED has attached assets worth over £12.6 million in the case belonging to the accused and their aides.

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