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Opinion

Congressional Kamal Nath liaison on the IT department investigation of Congress

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The Income Tax department is one step closer to completing its investigation into the recovery of unaccounted for cash from individuals and entities linked to Congressional leaders during extensive raids in Delhi, Bhopal, Goa and elsewhere ahead of the Lok elections. Sabha 2019, people familiar with the development said.

The department found that huge tranches of unaccounted for cash were delivered to the congress headquarters in Delhi, added the people, who asked not to be identified.

According to documents reviewed by HT, the investigation focuses on Vikas Dhingra, a relative of Vinela Jain, a close associate of the former Chief Minister of Madhya Pradesh, Kamal Nath. Investigators have also claimed in documents that Dhingra’s immigration data shows that he left India in April 2019 and has not returned yet. They add that it is probably a “conduit” and not the beneficiary.

The Central Board of Direct Taxes (CBDT), in April 2019, said in a statement that part of the Rs 281 million of unaccounted for cash “was transferred to the headquarters of a major political party in Delhi.” Without naming the political party at the time, CBDT said that around “20 million rupees of this cash was transferred hawala (canals) to party headquarters from the residence of a senior official on Tughlak Road. ”

The department’s statement last year came after raids at 52 locations linked to various individuals and entities, including Nath. His special service officer (OSD) Pravin Kakkar, his former adviser Rajendra Miglani, and executives linked to the firm of his brother-in-law Moser Baer and the company of his nephew Ratul Puri Hindustan Powerprojects Pvt Ltd were raided.

Two of the people named in the first instance said that the tax investigation had revealed that the amount given to the party was much higher than initially believed and that a final report will soon be sent to the Electoral Commission and other agencies. The documents say that Rs 106 million was “delivered” to Congress headquarters and another Rs 72 million to an account maintained by Dhingra and controlled by Nath. They also claim that some of the money was generated in Madhya Pradesh (when Nath was the prime minister).

Despite repeated attempts to contact him, Nath could not be reached for comment. When contacted, his former OSD RK Miglani declined to comment.

MP Congressional Spokesperson Saed Jafar said: “Central agencies are working under pressure from the central government. The leaders of the BJP Bharatiya Janata Party are plotting a conspiracy against the leaders of Congress and are misusing all the central agencies in it. But we are sure that the public is seeing everything ”.

In Bhopal, Madhya Pradesh Home Secretary Narottam Mishra on Tuesday ordered an investigation into the transfer of unaccounted money to the All India Congressional Committee account from 2016 to 2019, allegedly by the former prime minister and Chairman of the MP Congress Committee, Nath.

MIshra told reporters: “We have always said that the previous state government led by Congress was the most corrupt government. The runners were very active during Kamal Nath’s tenure. People were busy minting money. Kamal Nath spent the money from the woman and child development department assigned to solve the problem of malnutrition in Rahul Gandhi and deposited the social welfare fund in Gandhi Welfare. ”

Congress declined to comment on the matter.

According to the two people named above, the tax department examined several handwritten diaries, computer files and Excel sheets recovered during raids last year, and also questioned people linked to these payments.

The investigation’s findings are still being finalized and some of the details that are reported are part of the “assessment report,” the two people said. .

“It appears that a section of the media has apparently accessed some documents, and on that basis they are citing a sum of Rs 106 crore of unaccounted for money that can be traced back to the Congress Party. But that may not be the whole truth. The case could involve money worth several hundred million rupees and there are not just one or two beneficiaries. But it is an ongoing investigation. The Income Tax Department is governed by laws and without completing the entire investigation and appraisal process, which also involves responses and responses from the entities involved, a definitive conclusion cannot be reached ”, said one of the two people.

The CBDT, which controls the Income Tax Department, did not respond to HT’s inquiries.

“Investigations are carried out by designated authorities [director general of investigation] and the details of an ongoing investigation are not shared even within the department or ministry. [of finance]. It is understood that the issues are currently being investigated, ”said an official from the Ministry of Finance, requesting anonymity.

But Parliament Minister Mishra is interested in pursuing the state’s own case.

“The state government has taken notice of the matter. We will receive the advice of legal experts and we will also obtain documents from the Income Tax department. The Economic Crimes Wing (EOW) will carry out an investigation into this, ”he added.

The leader of the parliamentary Congress, Narendra Saluja, challenged the state government to “prove the accusations.”

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