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ED grills Lalu's daughter in money laundering case

IANS  |  New Delhi 

The (ED) on Tuesday grilled RJD chief Lalu Prasad's daughter Misa Bharti into its ongoing probe into the case of money laundering of over Rs 8,000 crore.

Misa Bharti, who reached the ED's headquarters in south Delhi's Khan Market area at around 11 a.m., was questioned for over nine hours.

ED officials have also summoned her husband Shailesh Kumar to appear before it on Wednesday, as he skipped their summons on Monday.

According to ED officials, Misa Bharti, who is also a Rajya Sabha MP, was questioned about her role in relation to firm Mishail Printers and Packers Private Ltd, her other finances and her links with arrested chartered accountant Rajesh Kumar Agarwal.

Agagrwal was arrested by the ED officials on May 22.

The agency officials said that the questioning of Misa Bharti was related to a Rs 8,000 crore money laundering probe being conducted by the agency against Delhi-based businessmen brothers -- Surendra Kumar Jain and Virendra Jain, and others who are alleged to have laundered several crore rupees using over 90 shell companies.

The firms of Jain brothers, who were arrested by the ED in March on charges of money laundering, dealt with Mishail Printers and Packers Pvt. Ltd. of which Misa Bharti and her husband are alleged to be directors.

The ED said that during investigation it was found that 1,20,000 shares of Mishail Printers and Packers Pvt Ltd were bought during 2007-08 at a rate of Rs 100 per share by four shell companies -- Shalini Holdings Ltd, Ad-Fin Capital Services (India) Pvt. Ltd, Mani Mala Delhi Properties Pvt. Ltd., and Diamond Vinimay Pvt. Ltd.

These shares were then allegedly bought back by Misa Bharti at Rs 10 per share.

According to the ED official, same money was used to purchase farmhouse in Bijwasan at a low price of Rs 1.41 crore in 2008-09, whereas its actual value was above Rs 50 crore.

The agency's action comes in the wake of the raids it carried on Saturday at three premises of Misa Bharti, her husband and Mishail Packers and Printers Pvt. Ltd in connection with the alleged money laundering.

The ED had raided Misa Bharti's premises a day after the CBI raided multiple premises of Rashtriya Janata Dal (RJD) supremo, his wife Rabri Devi and two sons -- Tejashwi and Tej Pratap Yadav -- who are ministers in Bihar government for allegedly receiving a three-acre plot of land as a quid pro quo for leasing out two railway hotels to a private company when was the Railways Minister in the UPA government.

Last month, the Income Tax department had attached over 12 properties of her relatives, including her husband, and brothers under the Benami Act.

--IANS

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(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

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