Jharkhand minister Alamgir’s OSD arrested in Rs. 35 crore cash recovery case

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India Tomorrow

RANCHI–Jharkhand’s minister Alamgir Alam’s OSD-cum-PA Sanjeev Lal and Lal’s aide Jehangir Alam were arrested on Tuesday in the Rs. 35 crore cash seizure case.

Alamgir is the leader of the Congress Legislative Party and MLA of Pakur. This is Alamgir’s fourth term as MLA from Pakur. The enforcement directorate (ED) has made this seizure on Monday. It raided about five places but the major seizure was allegedly made from Jehangir.

The former chief minister of Jharkhand belonging to the Jharkhand Mukti Morcha Hemant Soren is also in jail in a money laundering case. He was also arrested by the ED. Hemant Soren and JMM allege that Hemant has been framed wrongly as a political vendetta.

The money was seized from Jehangir Alam’s flat who hails from Chatra. He too is reported to be close to the minister. Interestingly, Sanjeev Lal has reportedly refused to accept that the money recovered from Jehangir belonged to him while Jehangir accepted that Lal had put the money in his flat. While there has been no official briefing of this case, ED sources provided the information to the media unofficially.

The ED sources claimed that the seized money was collected as cut money and commission in tenders and also from the racket of transfer-posting. The seizure of cash continued for the second consecutive day on Tuesday. This time more than Rs. two crore was also recovered from one contractor Rajiv Kumar Singh. ED claimed that Singh had given Rs. ten crores to Sanjeev Lal.

The seizure of money is related to the investigation of the money laundering case against Veerendra Ram. Veerendra was the chief engineer in Alamgir’s department. Veerendra was reportedly close to Alamgir.

The ED wanted a remand of ten days for both the accused but the PMLA court granted a remand of six days. Both were sent to the local Hotwar jail.

While the opposition BJP is quite aggressive in this matter, Congress seems to be on the backfoot. The state president of Congress Rajesh Thakur said that it was not correct to see the seizure of money in today’s context as Sanjeev had been PA to minister CP Singh and Vimala Singh also.

BJP leader Babu Lal Marandi asked the chief minister Champai Soren to get an FIR as he claimed that the letter written by the state’s chief secretary was recovered from the bundles of notes.

Alamgir Alam is a minister of rural development in the state. He has issued a short statement in this regard saying that Sanjeev Lal is a government employee who has served two other ministers earlier. He said that it would be proper to comment only after the ED completes its investigation.

As a fallout of this seizure Alamgir Alam was not seen in the election meeting of Congress MP Rahul Gandhi. Leader of Opposition in the Jharkhand Assembly, Amar Kumar Bauri raised this issue as why Alamgir was not seen in the election meet where Rahul Gandhi delivered a speech. He asked from Rahul to tell what is the relation of minister Alamgir Alam with Jehangir Alam.

It may be noted here that earlier in December 2023, around Rs. 300 crore was seized from different locations of Congress Rajya Sabha member Dhiraj Sahu. The Income Tax Department had seized the money from Sahu’s locations in Odisha and Jharkhand.

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