Tribune News Service
Mumbai, October 7
The Enforcement Directorate has been asked to go slow on investigations in a money laundering racket against former Maharashtra Chief Minister Narayan Rane since he is all set to join the BJP-led National Democratic Alliance (NDA), a PIL petition has alleged.
According to the petition by journalist-turned-activist Ketan Tirodkar, officials from the Union Finance Ministry had directed the ED to stop investigating Rane and his associate Kailash Agarwal who is the promoter of the Avighna group of real estate companies.
Both Rane and Agarwal were being probed by the ED for being involved in money laundering operations, the PIL alleged.
The petitioner submitted that after initiating a preliminary inquiry against the duo in January this year, the ED had sought filing a First Information Report against them.
However, investigations were stopped soon after Rane indicated that he was looking to join the BJP, the
petitioner has alleged.
The petitioner has now sought a direction from the court to the ED to file a status report in the case apart from resuming the probe.
Rane, who formed the Maharashtra Swabhiman Paksha, has announced that he would be joining the National Democratic Alliance soon.
According to sources, both Rane and Agarwal were under investigation by the ED for allegedly diverting Rs 300 crore illegally from their offshore accounts for their construction business in Mumbai.
Incidentally, the complaint was initially filed by Kirit Somaiya, BJP MP from Mumbai.
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