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ED attaches Rs 6.32 Cr assets of Telecom's' ex-deputy chief

New Delhi, Nov 10 (IANS) The Enforcement Directorate has provisionally attached assets worth Rs 6.32 crore of Somyendra Nath Banerjee, former Deputy Director General, New Technology, Department of Telecommunications (DoT), Kolkata and his associates under the provisions of the Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA), 2002 in a disproportionate assets case.

The attached assets include one office premises, two vacant plots of land, one three-storeyed commercial building along with plant and machinery of a running company, balance lying in 47 accounts, two vehicles, shares held in Demat accounts, and two Demand Drafts. The probe agency initiated a money-laundering investigation on the basis of a FIR registered by the CBI, ACB, Kolkata under Section 109 of IPC and Section 13(2) read with Section 13(1)(e) of the Prevention of Corruption Act, 1988.

As per the charge-sheet filed by the CBI, ACB, Kolkata, Banerjee had amassed huge assets beyond his known source of income and was in possession of disproportionate assets to the tune of Rs 7.58 crore. A money laundering investigation conducted by the ED revealed that Banerjee during the period from April 2005 to June 2013 while functioning in different capacities and different posts under the Ministry of Telecommunication had acquired huge amounts in cash through corrupt practices and by abusing his official position.

Thereafter these amounts were brought in the companies floated by him by showing them as share application money. Later, he used the money for purchasing various shares and properties in his name or in the name of his family members or their companies. A part of the money has also been used for investment in another company controlled by him or his family members.

Accordingly, proceeds of crime (POC) have been quantified at Rs 7.58 crore.