IRCTC scam: ED files charge sheet against Lalu, Rabri

The agency said Lalu Prasad and IRCTC officials allegedly misused their position for granting sub-lease of the rights of two railway hotels at Puri and Ranchi to Ms Sujata Hotel Pvt. Ltd. owned by Kochhars. PTI File Photo

The ED on Friday filed first chargesheet against Rashtriya Janata Dal (RJD) chief Lalu Prasad, his wife Rabri Devi, son Tejashwi Yadav and others here in a special court in connection with the IRCTC hotel-for-land scam case.

In its prosecution complaint (chargesheet), the Enforcement Directorate (ED) has also named RJD's Rajya Sabha MP and former Union minister Prem Chand Gupta, a close associate of Lalu, and Gupta's wife Sarla Gupta as accused, slapping various charges for laundering of money.

The investigation agency charged Lalu and the Indian Railway Catering and Tourism Corporation (IRCTC) officials of misusing their official positions to grant sub-lease of the rights of two railway hotels at Puri and Ranchi to M//s Sujata Hotel Private Limited.

In lieu of this subsequently, a total of 358 decimal of prime land were transferred to another firm M/s Delight Marketing Company Private Limited in February 2005 at a consideration which was much less than the then prevailing circle rates.

M/s Delight Marketing Company Private Limited was owned by Gupta's family, the ED said.

“The said company possessing valuable chunk of land gradually got transferred to Rabri Devi and her son Tejashwi Prasad Yadav by way of share purchase at nominal prices,” the investigation agency said.

The funds used to acquire the land had “dubious origin” and had been laundered through the IST group of companies belonging to Gupta. This was done by using an NBFC named M/s Abhishek Finance Company Limited belonging to PNR group of companies.

Subsequently, the shares of M/S Delight Marketing Company Private Limited “were acquired” by Rabri and Tejashwi at less than fair market value, the agency added.

“It is noteworthy that the funds used for the acquisition of shares by Rabri Devi are questionable and individuals from whom Tejashwi Yadav had purchased shares denied any knowledge of holding them,” the ED said.

The ED has already attached assets worth Rs 44.75 crore in this case till August 12.

The ED lodged a money laundering case against Lalu and others and started its investigation after the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) registered a case against them in July last year in connection with the scam.

The CBI submitted chargesheet against the accused in court in April this year.

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IRCTC scam: ED files charge sheet against Lalu, Rabri

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