ED has summoned Jharkhand Chief Minister Hemant Soren for September 23 and the Chief Minister has challenged the ED’s action in the Supreme Court. When Soren approached the Supreme Court regarding ED’s action in the money laundering case, his case is likely to be heard on Monday.
The Chief Minister had last month told the agency to withdraw the summons against him otherwise he would take legal action. On August 14, by not going to the ED office on the summons sent by ED, he had tried to convey the message that he was not afraid of ED. Then media reports said that he had written a letter to ED Assistant Director Devvrat Jha. In the letter, Hemant Soren had said that ‘ED should withdraw the summons sent to him. If he does not take it back then he will take recourse to law. After this letter, it is believed that Hemant Soren has decided to fight a legal battle against ED.
However, now Soren has said in his petition, ‘The Center is using the ED to target those opposition leaders who are not working with the government and with the date of general elections approaching and the opposition alliance against the ruling NDA. With the formation of India, targeting has increased.
According to NDTV report, Soren said, ‘Repeated summons are being served under the guise of investigation under PMLA regarding the properties owned and occupied by the petitioner and the source of its acquisition, the information and material of which is already with the ED. And is with the Central Bureau of Investigation. This is a ploy to harass and intimidate at the behest of the Central Government and is nothing but a complete abuse of powers by the ED.
The Central Investigation Agency has issued fresh summons asking him to appear on September 23. Last month, Soren was asked to join the investigation of the case.
The Chief Minister had then said in a letter to the Central Investigation Agency that he had provided all the necessary documents and information. He said that if ED wants any information then it can refer to the documents.
Hemant Soren is being investigated on money laundering charges related to the illegal mining case in Sahebganj district of Jharkhand. Soren is accused of allotting the mine lease in his own name in June 2021, when he was the Chief Minister. BJP leaders Raghuvar Das and Babulal Marandi had complained against this to the Governor and said that it was a case of office of profit. BJP had demanded that the Chief Minister should be disqualified.
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However, Soren has denied any wrongdoing and alleged a larger conspiracy to harass a tribal leader. He said that central agencies are targeting him because he is not coordinating with the central government.
Let us tell you that Soren had appeared before the investigating agency ED in November last year. Before appearing before the ED, Soren had said that a scam of Rs 1000 crore has been mentioned by the ED but on what basis this has been done, it is beyond understanding. The Chief Minister said that the investigating agencies should make any concrete allegations only after conducting a complete investigation.
Soren had said that the way the summons proceedings are going on, it seems as if he is about to flee the country. He said that such action creates a situation of doubt in the state.