NCP leader Praful Patel appears before ED for questioning in money laundering case
The Enforcement Directorate (ED) on Friday began questioning Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) leader Praful Patel who was told to appear before it on Friday in connection with a money laundering investigation related to alleged illegal assets of late Iqbal Mirchi, a close aide of underworld don Dawood Ibrahim.
Patel reached ED’s Ballard Estate office on Friday morning.
The agency sources stated that they will be questioning Patel over the alleged property dealings with the mirchi family.
Patel had clarified in a press conference in Mumbai earlier this week that there was no financial transaction or partnership between Mirchi’s wife Hajra Memon and his family, as claimed by the agency. Michi’s family too has been summoned in this case. However, they emailed ED stating that the Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA) provisions are not applicable outside the country.
The ED sources revealed that Hazra and her son Junaid are believed to be in UAE while her another son Asif is in London. The ED investigators also said they were investigating possible links between Patel and the promoters of HDIL (Housing Development & Infrastructure Ltd), Rakesh Wadhawan and his son Sarang Wadhawan, arrested in connection with the fraud at PMC Bank, after finding some documents which show that Patel used a private jet owned by a company linked to the Wadhawans.
A passenger manifest list of Privilege Airways Pvt Ltd in ED’s possession, also reviewed by HT, states that Praful Patel used the private jet twice in March 2012. Rakesh and Sarang Wadhawan are listed as the only directors of this company.