Amit Chandole (blue T shirt) outside the ED office last week.(HT FILE PHOTO)
Amit Chandole (blue T shirt) outside the ED office last week.(HT FILE PHOTO)

Mumbai court sends Shiv Sena MLA’s close associate to judicial custody till Dec 9 in money laundering case

The Sena leader had termed ED’s actions as an outcome of vendetta politics
By Vijay Kumar Yadav
UPDATED ON NOV 30, 2020 01:14 AM IST

A city court remanded Amit Chandole, a business associate of Shiv Sena Member of Legislative Assembly (MLA) Pratap Sarnaik, in judicial custody till December 9 on Sunday.

Chandole was arrested on Wednesday by the Enforcement Directorate (ED) in a money laundering case related to security services giant Topsgrup – owned by Rahul Nanda. After the completion of his three-day custody, ED officials produced him before the holiday court. However, the court did not agree to ED’s extension of Chandole’s custody and instead sent him to judicial custody. The counsel for the central agency has confirmed the development.

ED had in its previous remand application alleged that Topsgrup had obtained a contract for providing security guards for the Mumbai Metropolitan Region Development Authority (MMRDA) projects in collusion with Pratap Sarnaik through illegal means by a “well-thought out strategy”. The agency has claimed that the aim of these illegal manoeuvres was to get additional inadmissible benefit by inflating the number of contracted security guards deployed at the cost of MMRDA and illegal cash gratification to Sarnaik for facilitating this scam.

Against this “active role and criminal conspiracy”, Sarnaik used to get 50% profit earned out of the said contract and sometimes, the money used to be transferred to the account of a third person, said ED. Chandole accepted the receipt of cash from Topsgrup for the MMRDA projects, ED claimed. Therefore, part of the amount received by Topsgrup from MMRDA appears to be proceeds of crime, said ED.

The Sena leader had termed ED’s actions as an outcome of vendetta politics.

“The day I moved a privilege motion against (actor) Kangana Ranaut and (Republic TV editor-in-chief) Arnab Goswami, and spoke about reopening the Anvay Naik (suicide) case (in which Goswami is an accused), I knew what would happen. I am a Shiv Sainik and a fighter who has reached this far. (Chief minister) Uddhavsaheb Thackeray has made me the spokesperson to put forward the party’s views. Today they [ED officers] told him [Vihang] your father speaks a lot on Ranaut and Goswami. I will continue to speak wherever Mumbai, Maharashtra or its police are maligned. I have done nothing wrong in my business,” he has said last week after ED raided his properties and questioned his son.

Sarnaik on November 25 quarantined himself citing Covid-19 guidelines after returning to the state from Goa. He has asked ED for a week’s time to join the investigation. The agency said others people linked to Sarnaik’s businesses would also be soon asked to join the probe.

Earlier, Nanda had also denied all the allegations. “Pratap is a very old friend and has not invested a single penny in my business or company ever. He or Sena have nothing to do with Tops. This is absolutely absurd,” he said.

ED’s money laundering probe is based on a first information report (FIR) registered by Mumbai’s Yellow Gate police on October 28 on the direction of 16th metropolitan magistrate court against Nanda and his family members. The case was recently transferred to the Mumbai Police economic offences wing (EOW) for further investigation.

The complainant filed by Ramesh lyer, the former chairman of Topsgrup, alleged that Nanda and others diverted huge funds from the firm’s accounts to various accounts in India and overseas. He further alleged that these funds were utilised by Nanda and others for their personal purposes such as purchasing property. The security firm was thus defrauded of Rs175 crore.

Iyer and Topsgrup’s former director of finance Amar Panghal, in their statements, said that in 2014, a contract was signed by Topsgrup Services & Solutions Ltd with MMRDA, according to which 350-500 guards had to be deployed at project sites on a monthly basis. While only 70% of the guards were actually deployed, the firm billed MMRDA for all the guards and charged the authority for their salaries and provident fund, ED stated before the court.

The duo reportedly informed ED that huge cash amounts were withdrawn from the bank accounts of Topsgrup Services & Solutions Ltd and given to a former top executive. In financial year 2017-18, an amount of around Rs92 lakh was handed over to the executive and there was an arrangement with two persons, one of whom was Chandole who got a monthly share of profits earned on the MMRDA contracts. In addition, a fixed commission of Rs50,000 per month and Rs500 per guard deployed was being paid to Chandole and the other man by the top executive, said ED.

As per the details provided by lyer, from May 2017 to June this year, the amount aggregating to Rs2.36 crore has been shared as commission. Of the said amount, Rs90 lakh was paid through bank transfers to Chandole and the other man. As per lyer, all these amounts are still being paid from Topsgrup’s bank accounts and a commission of around Rs7 crore has been paid to the duo since 2014 when the contract with MMRDA was initiated.

During the course of investigation, the top executive’s statements were recorded on November 24 and 25, in which he purportedly said that Nanda acquired a United Kingdom (UK)-based firm, Shield Guarding Company Limited, in 2014 for around Rs200-250 crore. On the pretext of meeting the expenses of overseas company, Nanda used to allegedly siphon off money from the Indian company for his and his family’s personal expenses, including buying several immovable properties in Dubai and the UK.

SHARE THIS ARTICLE ON
app
Close
The raids are being conducted in connection with the PMC bank scam.
The raids are being conducted in connection with the PMC bank scam.

PMC Bank fraud: ED raids 5 locations, including BVA party chief’s Mumbai office

By Vijay Kumar Yadav & Ram Parmar
PUBLISHED ON JAN 22, 2021 02:43 PM IST
The anti-money laundering agency is carrying out searches as part of their probe in the alleged diversion of funds from HDIL and its subsidiary companies to the Viva group companies
Close
Arnab Goswami. (HT Photo)
Arnab Goswami. (HT Photo)

Arnab Goswami chat leaks: Congress stages protests across Maharashtra

PUBLISHED ON JAN 22, 2021 02:32 PM IST
In Mumbai, a protest was held outside Republic TV’s office in Lower Parel followed by a rally at Jambori Maidan in Worli. Key Congress leaders led marches in their respective districts in Maharashtra
Close
Representational image. (HT PHOTO)
Representational image. (HT PHOTO)

Mumbai: 60 cases of new Covid strain detected so far, says civic body

By Mehul R Thakkar
PUBLISHED ON JAN 22, 2021 01:03 PM IST
Over 25,000 passengers have arrived in the city from the United Kingdom (UK), Middle East, Europe or South Africa in the last month.
Close
Metro Kanjurmarg car-shed site after Bombay high court ordered a stay on the ongoing work in Mumbai, in December 2020. (HT file)
Metro Kanjurmarg car-shed site after Bombay high court ordered a stay on the ongoing work in Mumbai, in December 2020. (HT file)

Maharashtra government panel recommends Metro car-shed at Kanjurmarg

UPDATED ON JAN 22, 2021 11:13 AM IST
The panel has recommended Kanjurmarg citing future expansion in the 102-acre land and integration of lines 3 and 6 with a common car-shed there
Close
A Covid-19 vaccine shot being administered in Mumbai. (Satish Bate/HT Photo)
A Covid-19 vaccine shot being administered in Mumbai. (Satish Bate/HT Photo)

Covid-19:Mumbai civic body aims to vaccinate over 3K healthcare workers on Day 4

By Mehul R Thakkar
UPDATED ON JAN 22, 2021 10:54 AM IST
As of Wednesday, 5,251 healthcare workers had been vaccinated in Mumbai, followed by at least 10 cases of minor adverse effects post vaccination
Close
The Bombay high court had sought to know why ED could not desist from taking action against Khadse for a few days as he had already appeared before ED concerning the case. (HT FILE)
The Bombay high court had sought to know why ED could not desist from taking action against Khadse for a few days as he had already appeared before ED concerning the case. (HT FILE)

Bhosari land deal: No coercive action against NCP leader Eknath Khadse till Monday, says ED

By K A Y Dodhiya
PUBLISHED ON JAN 22, 2021 01:48 AM IST
The controversy pertains to the purchase of a plot in Bhosari, near Pune, by Khadse’s kin for 3.75 crore, against the prevalent market rate of 30 crore
Close
Jayant Patil, however, said Sharad Pawar’s word would be the final one on the issue. (HT FILE)
Jayant Patil, however, said Sharad Pawar’s word would be the final one on the issue. (HT FILE)

Would like to be Maharashtra CM someday: State NCP chief and minister Jayant Patil

PUBLISHED ON JAN 22, 2021 01:44 AM IST
Patil’s statement assumes significance as deputy CM and Pawar’s nephew Ajit Pawar is believed to be holding the second position in NCP after party chief
Close
The CM meets MPs of both the Houses of the Parliament before the parliamentary sessions to take up issues of the state.
The CM meets MPs of both the Houses of the Parliament before the parliamentary sessions to take up issues of the state.

Go beyond party lines, meet PM on Maratha quota, Belgaum issue and GST dues: Maharashtra CM to state MPs

UPDATED ON JAN 22, 2021 01:53 AM IST
Thackeray said that he has plans to form committees of MPs for better coordination between the state and the Centre
Close
A healthcare worker collects the swab sample of a passenger at Dadar station on Thursday. (Pratik Chorge/HT Photo)
A healthcare worker collects the swab sample of a passenger at Dadar station on Thursday. (Pratik Chorge/HT Photo)

Wednesday’s active Covid-19 case count was Mumbai’s lowest in 7 months

By Eeshanpriya MS
PUBLISHED ON JAN 22, 2021 01:30 AM IST
As per data from the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC), none of the 24 administrative wards in the city has over 500 active cases
Close
A healthcare worker collects the swab sample of a passenger at Dadar station on Thursday. (Pratik Chorge/HT Photo)
A healthcare worker collects the swab sample of a passenger at Dadar station on Thursday. (Pratik Chorge/HT Photo)

Tribal tehsil has higher Covid-19 positivity rate than Maharashtra

UPDATED ON JAN 22, 2021 01:25 AM IST
The failure of the administration to monitor and trace the contacts is to blame for the spread of the virus in around 13-14 villages in the district, according to health department officials
Close
A healthcare worker gets the Covid-19 vaccine shot at the BKC vaccination centre on January 16. (HT FILE)
A healthcare worker gets the Covid-19 vaccine shot at the BKC vaccination centre on January 16. (HT FILE)

Maharashtra goes past 2 million Covid-19 cases

PUBLISHED ON JAN 22, 2021 01:19 AM IST
The state recorded 2,886 fresh cases, pushing the count to 2,000,878, as it took 132 days to go from 1 million to 2 million infections, quicker than the 187 days for the first million, breached on September 11
Close
Police have warned codial media users not to send money or share account details with people they meet online. (Getty Images/iStockphoto)
Police have warned codial media users not to send money or share account details with people they meet online. (Getty Images/iStockphoto)

Mumbai man duped of 10 lakh by a social media friend

By Vijay Kumar Yadav, Mumbai
PUBLISHED ON JAN 22, 2021 12:57 AM IST
Cuffe Parade police have booked an unknown person for duping a 60-year-old man of 10
Close
 (HT FILE)
(HT FILE)

Maharashtra announces HSC, SSC examination dates

By Ankita Bhatkhande, Mumbai
PUBLISHED ON JAN 22, 2021 12:57 AM IST
The Maharashtra State Board of Secondary and Higher Secondary Education (MSBSHSE) will conduct the HSC (Class 12) examinations between April 23 and May 29, and the SSC (Class 10) examinations will be between April 29 and May 31.
Close
The march is part of the agitation being undertaken under the banner of Samyukt Shetkari Kamgar Morcha (SSKM) and aims to intensify the farmers’ struggle in the main capital cities across all states. (AP)
The march is part of the agitation being undertaken under the banner of Samyukt Shetkari Kamgar Morcha (SSKM) and aims to intensify the farmers’ struggle in the main capital cities across all states. (AP)

Maharashtra farmers to march to Raj Bhavan on Monday, will be joined by Sharad Pawar, Aaditya Thackeray, Balasaheb Thorat

By Naresh Kamath, Mumbai
UPDATED ON JAN 22, 2021 12:54 AM IST
Farmers’ outfits in the state will stage protests in Mumbai with a march to Raj Bhavan on Monday, to protest against the farm laws
Close
NCB also seized two pistols and <span class='webrupee'>₹</span>2.18 crore from the accused in the drugs case.
NCB also seized two pistols and 2.18 crore from the accused in the drugs case.

NCB busts private drug lab in Mumbai, two arrested with drug haul, cash

By Manish K Pathak, Mumbai
UPDATED ON JAN 22, 2021 01:12 AM IST
The Narcotics Control Bureau (NCB) has busted a drug laboratory at Dongri in south Mumbai and seized 12kg of mephedrone or MD, and arrested two more suspects including a disk jockey (DJ), based on revelations made by notorious drugs dealer Parvez Khan alias Chinku Pathan, a relative of former Mumbai don late Abdul Karim Sher Khan alias Karim Lala
Close
SHARE
Story Saved
OPEN APP