Kohinoor Square tower probe: Shirodkar quizzed again

Mumbai: Rajan Shirodkar, partner in the Matoshree Infrastructure Pvt Ltd, was questioned for the fourth time on Wednesday in the ongoing payment default probe launched by the Enforcement Directorate (ED) in the Kohinoor Square tower project. The probe is part of the multi-crore money laundering case investigation launched by the federal agency involving the cash-strapped Infrastructure Leasing and Financial Services (IL&FS).

Unlike previous marathon quizzing sessions, the questioning of Shirodkar lasted about four hours following his appearance at 11.30am, on Wednesday.

Though ED officials remained tightlipped, sources claimed Shirodkar clarified on the questionnaire he had been given on his previous appearance, on Monday.

It pertained to his share in the Rs80 crore profit made by Matoshree Infra, which exited the Kohinoor CTNL venture in 2008.

While the Maharashtra Navnirman Sena (MNS) chief, Raj Thackeray, who held 25 per cent partnership in the Matoshree Infra, had walked away with Rs20 crore, the rest Rs60 crore was distributed amongst the other seven partners, including Shirodkar.

Shirodkar, the sources said, had been asked to identify the partners and clarify on the exact benefit reaped by each one of them (including himself) and also the investments made following the repeipt of the money.

The ED had also asked Shirodkar to clarify on the firms which had invested Rs36 crore in the venture on the formers’ suggestion. The said firms had claimed their capital, along with interests, while exiting the venture (along with Matoshree) in 2008. No agreement papers between Matoshree and the investee have been found so far, and Shirodkar has been asked to come clear on it.

Matoshree’s contribution to the project was to the tune of Rs4 crore, of which Rs3 crore was allotted in loans by a cooperative bank while the rest one crore by two private individuals. As per the findings so far, Shirodkar and Thackeray had made windfall gains without investing anything in the project.

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