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Enforcement directorate to take over Amar Singh case

By Sharat Pradhan
October 29, 2009 21:46 IST
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The Enforcement Directorate will now, along with the Uttar Pradesh police' Economic Offences Wing, investigate the Rs 500-crore fraud alleged to have been played by Samajwadi Party general secretary Amar Singh.

Taking suo motto cognisance of media reports, the Enforcement Directorate on Thursday sought all files relating to the first information report registered against the high profile politician, UP cabinet secretary Shashank Shekhar Singh disclosed at a press conference in Lucknow on Thursday evening.

This comes close on the heels of the UP government's decision to entrust the entire case to its EOW.

"Responding to a letter from the directorate, we are sending a copy of the entire FIR to them, even as the state's own EOW will continue to hold a parallel inquiry into the alleged fraud", he said.

Meanwhile, the state government has shot off a letter to the Securities and Exchange Board of India to find out whether the companies mentioned in the FIR in connection with the case were listed.

The UP government has sent another letter to the department of serious fraud investigation office under the Union ministry of corporate affairs to look into the alleged fraud committed by Singh.

The complaint filed by local lawyer and social activist Shiva Kant Tripathi has accused the SP general secretary of amassing illegal wealth during his stint as chairman of the UP Development Council during the regime of Mulayam Singh Yadav. He is alleged to have used surreptitious means to transfer his ill-gotten wealth into pocket companies that were first merged into a set of companies, which in turn were merged into another set of six companies.

More than 80 percent of the shares of the six companies -- with assets worth around Rs 500 crore -- were held by him, his wife Pankaja Kumari Singh and his close friend actor Amitabh Bachchan.
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Sharat Pradhan in Lucknow