ED raids locations linked to Jharkhand Mining Secretary, others

Ranchi (Jharkhand) [India], May 6 (ANI): The Enforcement Directorate (ED) on Friday conducted raids at multiple locations, including premises of Jharkhand Mines and Geology Department Secretary, Pooja Singhal and businessman Amit Agarwal in Ranchi.

Several locations linked with Singhal are being raided in Ranchi, Delhi, Jaipur, and Mumbai, ED officials told ANI.

The ED is investigating Singhal based on a complaint that alleged she is allowing the operation of Pachadumar sand ghat through her handpicked contractors illegally without seeking wildlife clearance from the National Board of Wildlife and as such all the money whether, in the bank accounts of Jharkhand State Mineral Development Corporation, the Pachadumar sand project or bribe money, comes within the definition of proceeds of crime of Enforcement Directorate.

Senior advocate of Jharkhand High Court, Rajeev Kumar, has submitted a complaint against her to the ED in February 2022.

Singhal’s involvement in the National Rural Employment Guarantee Act (MNREGA) scheme in Khunti and Chatra districts is also being investigated.

Her involvement in illegal mining at Pachadumar Sand Ghat is also being investigated.

Pooja Singhal is the secretary of the Department of Mines and Geology and the Managing Director of Jharkhand State Mineral Development Corporation Limited (JSMDC).

Meanwhile, on May 2, the Election Commission of India (ECI) sent a notice to Jharkhand Chief Minister Hemant Soren over “office of profit” allegations against him regarding a mining lease.

He has been accused of having awarded himself a mining lease last year while holding charge of the state mining and environment department.

The EC sent the notice asking him to explain why action should not be taken against him for having a mining lease issued in his favour, which prima facie violates Section 9A of the Representation of the People Act, 1951.

Section 9A deals with disqualification for government contracts.


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Source: ANI