Teachers' scam: Assets worth Rs 20 cr of arrested Trinamool leader under ED scanner

by IANS |

Kolkata, March 13 (IANS) Assets and property worth around Rs 20 crore owned by Trinamool Congress leader Santanu Bandyopadhyay -- arrested in connection with the multi-crore teachers' recruitment scam in West Bengal -- has come under the scanner of Enforcement Directorate (ED) probing the matter.

ED has already mentioned the amount in the remand letter on this count.

The assets details procured by ED sleuths are either owned by Bandyopadhyay or his wife Priyanka Bandyopadhyay or jointly by both. The probe agency officials have approached the property registration office to get further details, sources said.

Priyanka Bandyopadhyay has been summoned this week for further questioning by the ED. She has been called to the ED office at Salt Lake in the northern outskirts of Kolkata with her bank account details and income tax returns documents, among others.

Santanu Bandyopadhyay is the principal nodal officer of the Trinamool Congress- controlled Hooghly-district zilla parishad. The assets and properties owned by him or his wife include resorts, homestays and high-end dhabas with hookah bar facilities, among others.

Besides involvement in the teachers' recruitment irregularities scam, the ED officials have also secured definite clues of Bandyopadhyay's involvement in a "money for transfer" scam, after the investigating officials secured several letters of transfer recommendations from his residence.

ED sleuths will be presented at a special court of the Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA) in Kolkata on Monday afternoon.

Sources said that the ED counsel will be presenting all the evidence secured against him and make an appeal for further extension of his central agency custody in the matter.

ED has got definite proof that Bandopadhyay had direct links with Trinamool Congress legislator and former president of West Bengal Board of Primary Education (WBBPE), Manik Bhattacharya, who is currently in judicial custody along with his wife and son for their alleged involvement in the recruitment scam.

The central agency team has recovered two identical lists of candidates for primary teachers' recruitment, first from the residence of Bhattacharya and the second from the residence of Bandyopadhyay.

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