By Staff Reporter
Shiv Sena legislator Pratap Sarnaik did not appear before the Enforcement Directorate (ED) on Monday in a case involving alleged misappropriations in a contract bagged by Tops Group with the Mumbai Metropolitan Region Development Authority (MMRDA),
Sarnaik was summoned again to appear on Monday by the agency who has questioned him in the past. This is the fourth summons issued in the case. Despite repeated attempts, Sarnaik was not available for comment.
Sarnaik was questioned by ED on December 10 over the contact and his alleged links with Amit Chandole, 46, who has been arrested in the case as termed as his "confidante" by the agency. The Supreme Court (SC) had asked ED to not take any coercive action against Sarnaik and his family in a recent interim order.
ED, referring to the statements recorded in the case, had earlier told the court that “it appears that Tops Group obtained a contract from MMRDA in collusion with Sarnaik through illegal means by a well thought out strategy. The aim of these illegal maneuvers was to get additional inadmissible benefits by inflating the bills”. The ED had earlier told the court that Chandole used to collect the said profits on behalf of Sarnaik. The funds mostly used to be delivered in cash; and that one Miss Latika Randive used to maintain the records for the same and she used to coordinate with Chandole.
Post questioning, Sarnaik had earlier told media-persons that it is his responsibility to answer questions posed by ED. “ED asked me some questions related to my profession, politics and others. I had said clearly that ED is a big organization tracking corruption and black money stashed abroad. ED was launched to teach lessons to such people and hence I believe it is my responsibility to answer their all questions as a people’s representative,” he said adding, “I answered these questions. I don’t know if they are satisfied with the answers or not but all the ED officers asked me questions in a playful environment. The questions were about my family, profession and politics and every question was answered."