The Mining Minister of Jharkhand, Pooja Singhal, who is being investigated for corruption, is facing further problems with the Enforcement Department as she intentionally withheld information on the charges against her, made evasive statements, and did not cooperate with the investigation agency’s investigation which constitutes grounds for this. Sources said her arrest.
On Tuesday, she appeared before the Ranchi Investigation Agency for questioning in a money laundering case linked to an alleged embezzlement of MGNREGA funds in the state’s Khunti district and other charges.
Pooja Singhal was the Deputy Collector of the Chattra, Khunti and Palamu Districts of Jharkhand between 2007 and 2013.
The federal agency recorded the Indian Administrative Service (IAS) officer statement of 2,000 payments under the Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA).
The ED investigation relates to a money laundering case in which the agency arrested Ram Pinod Prasad Sinha, a former junior engineer in the government of Jharkhand, on June 17, 2020, from West Bengal after being detained by the agency of the SPLA in 2012 after studying the management information reports of the vigilant office The state is against him.
Mr. Sinha is accused of embezzling Rural Employment Guarantee System funds, and has admitted paying a 5 per cent commission to the management of the area.
Sources in the investigation agency said that bank statements of Pooja Singhal and her husband Abhishek Jha reveal huge cash deposits of Rs 1.43 crore during the said period.
They said she had bought 13 life insurance policies and paid Rs 80.81 thousand in premiums between 2006 and 2013 and closed them prematurely and earned Rs 84.64 lakh.
The agency had arrested chartered accountant Suman Kumar in this case on May 7 after confiscating over Rs 17 crore in cash from his premises. He is being held until May 11. Mr. Kumar told the officials that most of the seized money belonged to Pooja Singhal.
Sources said Pooja Singhal transferred around Rs 16.57 from her account to CA Suman Kumar accounts during the said period.
Suman Kumar also admitted that he gave Rs 3 crore to a famous construction company to buy the land for Pulse Hospital owned by the IAS officer and her family. The sources said the current value of the hospital is Rs 70 crore.
“Huge amounts of proceeds of crime from MNREGA (Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Act) funds have been incorporated into the construction and management of Pulse Hospital owned by Pooja Singhal and her family,” they said.
Today, her husband, Abhishek Jha, is being questioned about the management and transactions at Pulse Hospital.