Lalu in Trouble: ED issues notice to Tejashwi Yadav and Rabri Devi

New Delhi, Nov 17: IRCTC hotel scam: Enforcement Directorate issues notice to Tejashwi Yadav and Rabri Devi, asking them to appear on 20th November and 24th November respectively.

The Enforcement Directorate (ED) has summoned former Bihar Deputy Chief Minister Tejaswi Yadav and his mother Rabri Devi in connection with its money laundering probe in a railway hotels allotment corruption case dating back to the UPA rule.

The case dates back to the time when Lalu was the railway minister in the UPA government.

The central probe agency is expected to record their statements under the provisions of the Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA), under which it had registered an FIR against members of Lalu Prasad family and others sometime back.

The Enforcement Directorate had earlier questioned a few people in this case including the wife of former UPA minister P C Gupta.

The agency had taken cognisance of a CBI FIR in this regard to initiate its own criminal complaint.

In July, the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) had registered a criminal first information report (FIR) and conducted multiple searches against Lalu Prasad, who is also a former Bihar chief minister, and others.

The ED will investigate the alleged "proceeds of crime" generated by the accused, purportedly through shell companies, officials have said.

Rabri, Tejaswi and others will be probed by the agency under charges filed in the Enforcement Case Information Report (ECIR), the ED equivalent of a police FIR.

The CBI FIR alleges that Lalu Prasad, as railway minister, handed over the maintenance of two IRCTC hotels to a company after receiving a bribe in the form of prime land in Patna through a 'benami' company owned by Sarla Gupta.

The FIR was registered on July 5 in connection with favours allegedly extended to Sujata Hotels in awarding a contract for the upkeep of the hotels in Ranchi and Puri and receiving premium land as 'quid pro quo'.

The ED, under the PMLA, has powers to attach and confiscate tainted assets and it is likely that the agency will initiate such a move once it makes progress in the case.

News24Bureau with Agencies