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4 accused surrender after being on run for nine months

Four accused in the alleged Rs 500 cr hawala scam in Katni, including the main accused Manish Saraogi, surrendered before Kotwali police on Wednesday night and were produced before court on Thursday, from where they were sent to jail.

bhopal Updated: Oct 12, 2017 18:55 IST
(APAP photo)

Four accused in the alleged Rs 500 cr hawala scam in Katni, including the main accused Manish Saraogi, surrendered before Kotwali police on Wednesday night and were produced before court on Thursday, from where they were sent to jail. Police did not ask for their remand.

Kotwali TI Sailesh Mishra said, “As we had questioned them last night, there was no further need for police remand, so they were sent to jail.” The four challans in the four cases registered in connection with the hawala scam has already been submitted.

The four accused, Manish Saraogi, Naresh Barman, Dassu Patel and Naresh Poddar who had reward of Rs 10,000 for their arrest had been on the run for nine months. With this nine persons have been arrested in the case.

The case had hit the headlines after the then Katni SP Gaurav Tiwari started digging into the case and allegedly found links of BJP leaders into the scam.

Congress has consistently alleged the State MSME minister Sanjay Pathak was behind the scam as persons close to him had been named. The case took political overtones after Tiwari was transferred from Katni on January 5, 2017, a mere four days after the arrested of accountant Sandeep Barman, who named Satish and Manish Saraogi who are close to Pathak, as being involved in the scam. Pathak has repeatedly denied charges of wrong doing.

The hawala scam is being investigated by three agencies – the income tax which is investigating the tax evasion part, the Kotwali police is investigating the criminal angle and the Enforcement Directorate is investigating the money laundering aspect.

The sensational case of huge transactions in fictitious accounts had surfaced following a complaint from a farmer claiming that unidentified people made transactions of Rs 90 lakh from a Jan Dhan saving account opened in his name at an Axis Bank branch in Katni district. He had come to know of the transactions only after receiving a notice from the Income Tax (I-T) department, said police.

Another person had made a similar complaint alleging cash transactions of Rs 16 lakh through a savings account opened in his name at the same bank branch. The matter was initially brushed under the carpet. But when Tiwari took charge he reopened the case and found out around 32 such accounts through which huge transactions were carried out. These accounts were opened in the name of BPL cardholders as well as small and micro enterprises (MSMEs).

Police registered four FIRs under sections 420, 467, 468, 471, 120 B, 423, 424 of the IPC.

IN BOX

Police case registered on July 12, 2016

ED case registered on January 19, 2017

Sandeep Barman, accountant arrested on January 5, 2017

Manavendra Mistry arrested on February 11, 2017

Dr Jitendra Jain and Anant Arya (Montu) arrested on March 1, 2017

Satish Saragvi arrested on March 16, 2017

Manish Saraogi, Naresh Barman, Dassu Patel and Naresh Poddar all arrested on October 11, 2017