Jharkhand land scam case: Four more arrested by ED

April 17, 2024
April 17, 2024IANS - New Delhi

The Enforcement Directorate (ED) has arrested four more persons in connection with the money laundering case connected to illegal land acquisition involving former Jharkhand Chief Minister Hemant Soren and others, sources said on Wednesday.

Those arrested under the Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA) are JMM leader Antu Tirkey, Priya Ranjan Sahay, Bipin Singh, and Irshad.

"They were arrested after searches in Jharkhand on Tuesday," said the sources in the Ranchi Division of ED.

These latest arrests bring the total number of individuals detained in connection to this case to eight.

The financial probe agency had initiated the money laundering investigation in the cases of land scam based on multiple FIRs registered by Jharkhand Police against several persons, including government officials.

"ED investigation has revealed that one of the accused persons, Bhanu Pratap Prasad, a revenue department official and custodian of original government records, misused his official position by providing assistance to several persons, including Hemant Soren, in their activities linked to illegal occupation, acquisition and/or possession of proceeds of crime in form of landed properties," the probe agency had said.

The probe also revealed that a racket of land mafia is active in Jharkhand which used to forge the land records in Ranchi.

"It is also revealed that ownership records of lands have also been forged to extend favours to the said land mafia. Subsequently, based on forged land records, such land parcels are sold to other persons," the ED had said.

The ED claimed that original land records of ownership are either tampered with or concealed to facilitate unlawful acquisition, possession and use of such properties.