J-K Cricket Association money laundering case: ED attaches assets worth Rs 11.86 crore of National Conference president Farooq Abdullah
The Enforcement Directorate (ED) on Saturday attached assets worth Rs 11.86 crores of former Jammu and Kashmir chief minister Farooq Abdullah in connection with the Jammu and Kashmir Cricket Association (JKCA) money laundering case.
The properties which were attached by the Enforcement Directorate include three residential houses at Gupkar Road in Srinagar, Tanmarg and Sunjwan village. Lands owned by Farooq Abdullah at four different places in Jammu and Kashmir has also been attached by the ED officials. The Enforcement Directorate in its statement also pointed out that residential property attached in Sunjwan was constructed after grabbing state and forest land.
ED said that after conducting investigations under the Prevention of Money Laundering Act, it found out that between the years 2005-06 to 2012, the Jammu and Kashmir Cricket Association received funding totalling to Rs 109.78 crore from Board of Cricket Control in India (BCCI).
The ED in its statement said that between the years 2006 and 2012, Farooq Abdullah took advantage of his position in the Jammu and Kashmir Cricket Association by making illegal appointments at the JKCA and alleged that he misused those appointments by giving them financial powers in order to launder JKCA’s funds.
ED says that the investigation conducted into the money laundering case revealed that the former Jammu and Kashmir chief minister ‘was instrumental as well as beneficiary of the laundered funds of JKCA.’
“Despite existing regular bank account of JKCA, six new bank accounts were opened for parking of JKCA Funds and siphoning of the same. One dormant bank account in the name of Kashmir Wing of JKCA was also made operational for the same purpose,” the statement from the central agency further said.
The scam came into light in the year 2012 when JKCA treasurer Manzoor Wazir filed a complaint to the Jammu and Kashmir police against former general secretary Mohammad Saleem Khan and former treasurer Ahsan Mirza.
Following Wazir’s complaint a list of 50 names linked to the financial scandal was out was released following which Farooq Abdullah lost the post of JKCA president after holding it for more than three decades.
ED earlier in February had said that it has attached assets worth Rs 2.6 crore in a money laundering case related to the alleged embezzlement of funds of JKCA. The Enforcement Directorate conducted the probe based on the FIR filed by the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) following which general secretary Mohammed Saleem Khan and former treasurer Ahsan Ahmad Mirza were booked. The J-K High Court in 2015 had asked CBI to conduct an investigation into the matter. The CBI filed a charge sheet against Farooq Abdullah, Khan, Mirza, Mir Manzoor Gazanffer Ali, Bashir Ahmad Misgar and Gulzar Ahmad Beigh (former accountant of JKCA) for “misappropriation of JKCA funds amounting to Rs 43.69 crore” from grants given by the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) to the association for promoting the sport in the state between 2002-11.
(with inputs from Neeraj Chauhan)