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12 hours, 6 machines: Ranchi raids uncover Rs 30 crore stash linked to minister

In the lead-up to the Lok Sabha election in Jharkhand, the recent recovery has ignited a political firestorm.

Written by  Annesha Barua -- May 06th 2024 08:56 PM
12 hours, 6 machines: Ranchi raids uncover Rs 30 crore stash linked to minister

12 hours, 6 machines: Ranchi raids uncover Rs 30 crore stash linked to minister

PTC News Desk: In Ranchi, Jharkhand, a staggering amount of cash, estimated at Rs 30 crore, has been uncovered in a dramatic raid linked to a money laundering case. The operation, spanning over 12 hours, involved the relentless efforts of six cash counting machines, struggling to keep up with the influx of currency. 

Despite several machines breaking down under the strain, officials persevered to ascertain the final tally.

The cache of cash was discovered in a room belonging to Jahangir, a domestic aide employed by Sanjiv Lal, the personal secretary to Jharkhand Rural Development Minister and Congress leader Alamgir Alam.

The Enforcement Directorate, in its investigation targeting Virendra Ram, a former chief engineer at the Jharkhand Rural Development Department, uncovered this massive sum. Ram had previously been arrested in connection with a money laundering probe related to alleged irregularities in government schemes' implementation.

The timing of this revelation, just days ahead of the Lok Sabha elections in Jharkhand, has sparked a political firestorm. The BJP has seized upon the connection to a Congress minister, alleging widespread corruption within the opposition party. Prime Minister Narendra Modi, campaigning in Odisha, referenced the cash seizure as evidence of systemic corruption. He emphasised his commitment to curbing such malpractices despite facing criticism.

Jharkhand BJP chief Babulal Marandi questioned the extent of corruption, suggesting that the recovery from the secretary's aide's residence hints at more significant revelations. He called for the removal of Alamgir Alam from his ministerial position, citing the ongoing investigations.

In response, Alam urged restraint, emphasising the need to await the completion of the Enforcement Directorate's inquiry before drawing conclusions. He highlighted Sanjiv Lal's previous service under two former ministers and defended the appointment based on experience. Alam cautioned against premature judgments, urging the public to let the investigative process unfold.

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- With inputs from agencies

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