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Punjab CM Channi’s Nephew Received Rs 10 Crore for Sand Mining, Transfers: ED

Honey was arrested by the agency on 4 February following day-long questioning in the illegal sand mining case.

Updated
India
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Days after the arrest of Punjab Chief Minister Charanjit Singh Channi’s nephew Bhupinder Singh ‘Honey’ in a money laundering case, the Enforcement Directorate (ED) claimed on Monday, 7 February, that Honey had received Rs 10 crore cash in lieu of facilitating illegal sand mining and transfer-posting of certain officials.

Honey was arrested by the agency from Jalandhar on 4 February following day-long questioning in the illegal sand mining case. He will remain in custody with the ED till Friday, 11 February, reported ANI.

The ED also claimed to have recovered Rs 10 crore in cash during searches conducted in January.

The central agency said in a statement on Monday, “During the course of search operation, statements of Kudratdeep Singh, Bhupinder Singh, Santokh Singh (father of Bhupinder Singh) and Sandeep Kumar were recorded, establishing that the seized Rs 10 Crore belonged to Bhupinder Singh S/o Santokh Singh. Further, Bhupinder Singh accepted that he received the seized cash in lieu of facilitation in sand mining operations and transfer/postings of officials,” The Indian Express reported.

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The development comes ahead of the Punjab Assembly elections, scheduled to take place on 20 February.

Reacting to the raids, Channi had said last month that the move was meant to pressurise him ahead of the Assembly elections in the state, adding that "it is not good for democracy."

Background

The agency had conducted searches at various premises on 18 January, including the business and residential premises of directors of Providers Overseas Consultants Pvt Ltd, a company, which ED has alleged, is involved in illegal sand mining. Kudratdeep Singh, Honey, and Sandeep Kumar are the directors in the company.

Following the searches, Honey was summoned on 3 February.

The ED had said in a statement after Honey’s arrest, “In response, he appeared and tendered his statement, wherein he, inter-alia, stated that he is involved in the mining related activities, but took an evasive approach when confronted with incriminating data,” The Indian Express reported.

Meanwhile, Channi has said that the case was being unnecessarily linked to him.

The ED case is based on an First Information Report (FIR) registered at Rohan Police Station in SBS Nagar, Punjab.

The FIR has alleged that a team comprising officials of the mining department, civil administration and police department made a surprise check on 7 March 2018 based on a complaint regarding illegal sand mining.

Following which, it was found out that mining was being carried out beyond the designated area, the ED has claimed.

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