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Money Laundering Case: ED Attaches Assets Worth Rs 5.73 Crore of Eknath Khadse

Khadse has been given a clean chit by two investigations before when he was a member of the BJP.

Published
India
2 min read
<div class="paragraphs"><p>Former Maharashtra minister Eknath Khadse. Image used for representational purposes.&nbsp;</p></div>
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The Enforcement Directorate (ED) on Friday, 27 August, provisionally attached assets worth Rs 5.73 crore of Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) leader Eknath Khadse, his wife Mandakini Khadse and son-in-law Girish Chaudhri in connection with the Pune MIDC land deal case.

A bank account with a deposit of Rs 86 lakh has been frozen by the agency, while properties, including a bungalow in Lonavala and land in Maharashtra’s Jalgaon have also been attached.

ED have been investigating Khadse and Chaudhri for allegedly grabbing land of the Maharashtra Industrial Development Corporation (MIDC) in Pune’s Bhosari village by paying Rs 3.75 crore when its actual value was over Rs 31 crore, Indian Express reported.

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The ED has alleged that the money for the deal was allegedly routed through five shell companies, while the land was purchased in Chaudhri’s name.

An Enforcement Case Information Report (ECIR) was filed against Khadse, his wife, Chaudhri and original land owner Abbas Ukani in October 2020.

The ED has alleged that Khadse, who was the state revenue minister in 2016 in the then Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis' Cabinet, was able to manipulate the land deal, causing the public exchequer a loss of Rs 61.25 crore.

However, Khadse has been given a clean chit by two investigations before when he was a member of the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP).

Background

Eknath Khadse had been questioned by the ED for nearly seven hours in January.

Khadse had to quit in 2016 after his name came up in alleged wrongdoings in the Pune government land deal. Since then, he remained in the political periphery, till he joined the NCP last year.

The Pune Anti-Corruption Bureau had previously investigated the case, after which Khadse was given a clean chit. The Fadnavis government had also formed a committee to investigate the matter. However, no concrete evidence had emerged against Khadse.

Once Khadse switched from the BJP to the NCP, the ED initiated a probe in the case.

Anti-Corruption Bureau of Maharashtra had registered an FIR against Khadse, his wife, Girish Choudhary and Abbas Aquani in 2017.

(With inputs from The Indian Express)

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