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Chhattisgarh Liquor case: SC to hear petitions related to money laundering case tomorrow
New Delhi: The Supreme Court on Monday said that it will hear on May 30, various petitions challenging the alleged money laundering case related to liquor irregularities in Chhattisgarh.
A bench of justices Bela M Trivedi and Prashant Kumar Mishra adjourned the matter for tomorrow. Chattisgarh's Excise official Niranjan Das and various others including Karishma Dhebar, Anwar Dhebar and Pinki Singh have approached Supreme Court.
Pinki Singh who was represented by senior Advocate Siddharth Dave and assisted by advocate Aakashi Lodhi challenged certain provisions of the Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA). The petitioner has also sought quashing of the Enforcement Case Information Report (ECIR) in liquor irregularities matter in Chhattisgarh.
Notably, ED is investigating the alleged liquor scam which took place between 2019 to 2022.
As per the agency, during this period, corruption took place in multiple ways. The bribe was collected from the distillers, per each case of liquor procured from them by the CSMCL.
"ED investigation has revealed that Arun Pati Tripathi through his direct actions at the insistence of Anwar Dhebar, corrupted the entire liquor system of Chhattisgarh to maximize corruption in the department. He made policy changes in conspiracy with his other colleagues and gave tenders to associates of Anwar Dhebar so that maximum benefits could be taken," ED stated.
Despite being a senior ITS Officer and MD of CSMCL, he went against the ethos of the functioning of any State Excise Department and used the State-run shops to sell unaccounted kacha liquor, ED has alleged.
The agency has further alleged that "Arun Trpathi's complicit actions resulted in massive losses to the state exchequer and filled the pockets of the beneficiaries of the Liquor Syndicate with more than Rs 2000 Crore in illegal proceeds of crime. He also received a substantial share in this loot".
Thus, the very objective of CSMCL to increase the State's revenue and to provide quality controlled liquor to citizens was violated by him for his personal illegal gains, read the official statement.
ED has conducted consequential search operations at locations in Raipur, Bhilai and Mumbai. The searches have resulted in the discovery of 53 acres of land in Naya Raipur having a book value of Rs 21.60 crore acquired by Anwar Dhebar by using proceeds of crime in the name of a JV.
This property was purchased through a maze of transactions in the name of an associate by routing proceeds of crime acquired from the FL-10A licensee. During recent search proceedings, cash worth Rs 20 lacs and multiple incriminating documents were seized, mentioned the agency's official statement. (ANI)