ED invokes receipts of refrigerator, smart TV against Hemant Soren, explains why | Latest News India - Hindustan Times

ED invokes receipts of refrigerator, smart TV against Hemant Soren, explains why

Apr 07, 2024 05:47 PM IST

Hemant Soren was arrested on January 31 by the ED in connection with a land scam money laundering probe.

The Enforcement Directorate (ED) has used invoices of a refrigerator and a smart television as evidence to support its claim that former Jharkhand chief minister Hemant Soren acquired 8.86 acres of land worth more than 31 crore illegally.

Former Jharkhand chief minister Hemant Soren was arrested by the Enforcement Directorate on January 31.(PTI file)
Former Jharkhand chief minister Hemant Soren was arrested by the Enforcement Directorate on January 31.(PTI file)

According to a PTI report, the agency obtained these receipts from two Ranchi-based dealers and attached them to its chargesheet against the Jharkhand Mukti Morcha leader last month. The special PMLA court took cognisance of the prosecution complaint on April 4, the report added.

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As per the central probe agency, both the refrigerator and smart TV were bought in the name of the family of Santosh Munda, who told ED that he has been living as a caretaker of the property of the ex-CM on the said 8.86 acre land for the past 14-15 years.

ALSO READ: Hemant Soren ‘forcefully’ acquired land worth 31 crore in Ranchi: ED

The ED used Munda's statement to counter the JMM leader's claims that he had no link with the said land. It also rejected the claim of one Rajkumar Pahan on the piece of land, alleging that he was a "front" for Soren to keep the asset under his control.

According to the agency, soon after Soren was issued the first summons last year, Pahan had written to the Ranchi deputy commissioner stating he and some others have the land in possession and the earlier mutation in the name of other owners be cancelled and they may be saved from being evicted from their property.

The JMM-Congress government "restored" the land to Pahan on January 29, two days before Soren's arrest, so that the JMM leader's control and possession remained "unimpeded,the ED alleged in its chargesheet.

According to the ED, the land was originally a 'Bhuinhari' property that cannot be transferred or sold to anyone under general situations and 'Mundas' and 'Pahans' were the owners of such land assets.

ALSO READ: Soren created parallel evidence to conceal illegal land, claims ED

The immovable asset was later sold to some persons by the original allottees but Soren got them "evicted" and gained control of the land in 2010-11.

Santosh Munda had also told the ED that Hemant Soren and his wife Kalpana visited the land "two to three times" and that he worked as a labourer when a boundary wall was being erected at the plot.

The ED claims Munda was entrusted the charge of the property's caretaker at the behest of Soren, apart from another accused in the case Hilariyas Kachhap who got an electricity meter installed there.

A refrigerator was purchased in February 2017 in the name of Munda's son while a smart TV was purchased in November 2022 in the name of his daughter at the address where the land is located in Ranchi, the agency said.

(With PTI inputs)

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