Enforcement Directorate (ED)
Enforcement Directorate (ED)
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The ED has attached properties worth Rs 72 crore belonging to Pravin Raut under PMLA in a PMC Bank loan cheating case.

Earlier, Shiv Sena leader Sanjay Raut's wife Varsha had been summoned for her alleged transactions with Pravin Raut's wife. Under scrutiny are loans or dues of Varsha Raut who has sought more time from ED to appear.

Among the transactions which are under scanner is a loan of Rs 55 lakh acquired from one Madhuri Raut, wife of Pravin Raut, who has been associated with Guruashish Constructions which is linked to Housing Development Infrastructure Limited (HDIL).

An explanation in this regard is likely to be sought during the questioning. The declaration in Sanjay Raut’s election affidavit also mentions the dues. ED sources stated that there are other transactions that are also under the ambit of the probe.

Investigation under PMLA revealed that Rs 95 crore has been siphoned off through HDIL by Pravin Raut. The source of the funds were illegal availed loans/advances etc. by HDIL from PMC Bank. It was revealed that there were no document/agreements etc. in support of these payments made to Pravin Raut.

Further, as per the ledger of M/s. HDIL, the funds were given to Pravin for acquiring land in the Palghar area. The investigation also revealed that Pravin paid an amount of Rs 1.6 crore to his wife Madhuri from the proceeds of crime. Out of the said money, Madhuri Raut transfered Rs 55 lakh (i.e., Rs 50,00,000/- on 23.12.2010 and Rs 5,00,000/- on 15.03.2011) as an interest-free loan to Varsha Raut.

The amount was further utilised for purchase of a flat in Dadar East, Mumbai. The investigation further revealed that Varsha and Madhuri Pravin Raut are partners in M/s. Avani Construction. Varsha has received Rs 12 lakh from this entity (as overdrawn capital converted to loan) on a contribution of mere Rs 5625. The loan amount of Rs 12 lakh is still remains outstanding.

Over 73% of PMC Bank’s loan exposure was to HDIL, the ED probe revealed. HDIL’s Sarang Wadhawan and his father Rakesh Wadhawan are also directors in the firm. The Wadhawans are also accused in the Punjab and Maharashtra Co-operative (PMC) Bank scam case.

Earlier, Pravin Raut was arrested by Economic Offences Wing (EOW) in February this year in connection with alleged irregularities in a redevelopment project allotted by The Maharashtra Housing and Area Development Authority (MHADA).

Sanjay Raut had warned BJP leaders of legal action for linking his family’s name to the Punjab and Maharashtra Co-operative (PMC) Bank, and Housing Development and Infrastructure Limited (HDIL) scams.

Taking to Twitter, Sanjay Raut wrote: "Suddenly many mini lotus are blooming along with godi media after news of my family receiving ED notice was made public. People are aware that how 'caged parrots' are being released for political vandetta. My family's name is mischievously being linked to PMC and HDIL scam. I challenge them to prove it or face legal action. Enough is enough."

(With inputs from Pratik Salunke)

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