IRCTC hotels case: ED to quiz

New Delhi, Dec 2 After RJD chief Lalu Prasad's wife Rabri Devi failed to respond to eight summons in a money laundering probe regarding the 2006 IRCTC hotels contract case, the Enforcement Directorate (ED) is set to question her in Patna on Saturday.

A team of ED officials will question her at the agency's office in the Bihar capital, an agency official told IANS. 

Rabri Devi has so far not come forward for questioning even though the ED had earlier questioned her son and former Bihar Deputy Chief Minister Tejashwi Yadav twice -- on November 13 and October 10.

The ED is probing irregularities in the case under the Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA) against Tejashwi, his father Lalu Prasad, and other family members. 

On July 27, the Enforcement Directorate had registered a case under the PMLA following an FIR by the Central Bureau of Investigation and is probing the trail of funds transferred through shell companies. 

The CBI registered a corruption case on July 5 against Lalu Prasad, Rabri Devi, and Tejashwi Yadav for alleged irregularities in the allotment of contracts for two Indian Railway Catering and Tourism Corporation (IRCTC) hotels in Ranchi and Puri in 2006 to a private firm when the Rashtriya Janata Dal chief was the Railways Minister.

The contracts were given to Sujata Hotels, a company owned by Vijay and Vinay Kochhar, allegedly in lieu of bribe in the form of a plot of prime land in Bihar, the CBI said.

Apart from Ahluwalia Contractors' promoter Bikramjeet Singh Ahluwalia, who has also been questioned in the case, former Union Minister Prem Chand Gupta's wife Sarla Gupta and then IRCTC Managing Director P.K. Goel are co-accused in the case.