ED raids gaming app firm in Kolkata, seizes 18 cr cash

Updated on Sep 11, 2022 05:04 AM IST

“ED has been carrying out search operations under the provisions of the PMLA (Prevention of Money Laundering Act), 2002 (on 10.09.2022) at six premises in Kolkata, in respect to an investigation relating to the Mobile Gaming Application. Huge cash has been found at the premises,” the agency tweeted.

The Enforcement Directorate (ED) recovered cash worth around <span class='webrupee'>₹</span>18 crore after it raided six locations in Kolkata. (PTI)
The Enforcement Directorate (ED) recovered cash worth around 18 crore after it raided six locations in Kolkata. (PTI)
By, Kolkata

The Enforcement Directorate (ED) recovered cash worth around 18 crore after it raided six locations in Kolkata in connection with a money-laundering probe related to a mobile gaming application, officials said.

The mobile application, officials added, was mostly used during the Covid-19 pandemic and duped several people.

The house of a businessman, Nesar Ahmed Khan, at Garden Reach in southwest Kolkata were among the premises that were raided.

“ED has been carrying out search operations under the provisions of the PMLA (Prevention of Money Laundering Act), 2002 (on 10.09.2022) at six premises in Kolkata, in respect to an investigation relating to the Mobile Gaming Application. Huge cash has been found at the premises,” the agency tweeted.

While Nesar deals with transport, his son Amir, who launched the application, is the main accused and yet to be arrested, ED officials familiar with the probe said.

“Bundles of cash of all denominations from 100 to 2,000 were recovered from a room of the two-storey house on Saturday. We had to rope in bank officials and eight currency note counting machines to count the notes. Till around 7:30 pm, the amount was 18 crore,” an official said on condition of anonymity.

The seizure comes more than a month after the ED seized around 50 crore in cash from two flats of former state education minister Partha Chatterjee in connection with a probe into alleged irregularities in recruitment of teaching and non-teaching staff in government schools. He was later arrested and is currently in jail.

The raids sparked a fresh war of words between the ruling TMC and opposition BJP in the state.

Senior TMC minister and Kolkata mayor Firhad Hakim said the TMC has nothing to do with the businessman concerned but alleged the Centre wanted to drive away investors from the state by spreading the fear of “harassment” by federal agencies.

“It seems the ED raids are being conducted to send a message to the businessmen that if they do business in West Bengal, they would be harassed. This is my personal opinion. I feel that efforts are on to cripple the economy of the state,” he said.

BJP state spokesperson Samik Bhattacharya rejected the charge, saying the raids were only against unscrupulous businessmen, and asked the TMC leader if he had anything to hide.

“The Centre has taken a zero-tolerance policy towards corruption and money laundering. This is the reflection,” he said.

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