New Delhi: Cracking its whip in the multi-crore Rose Valley chit fund scam, the Enforcement Directorate (ED) on Monday said that it has attached properties to the tune of Rs 70 crore including the bank accounts of St Xaviers College in Kolkata and also the bank accounts of Knight Riders Sports Pvt Ltd.
A senior ED official said that the financial probe agency has attached the properties belonging to various companies and individuals who received funds from Rose Valley Group.
The official said the ED has attached bank accounts of Multiple Resorts Pvt Ltd, St Xavier’s College and Knight Riders Sports Pvt Ltd to the tune of Rs 16.2 crore under the Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA).
The official said that the St Xaviers and Knight Riders Sports Pvt Ltd received payments from the bank accounts of the Rose Valley. Bollywood superstar Shahrukh Khan’s wife Gauri Khan and Bollywood actress Juhi Chawla’s husband Jay Mehta and Venky Mysore are the directors of the Knight Riders Sports Pvt. Ltd.
In October last year, the ED questioned the CEO of Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR), owned by Red Chillies Entertainment and promoted by Shah Rukh Khan, in its probe into the money laundering case involving the Rose Valley Group, which sponsored the IPL team for two years.
During the high-profile probe by the ED and the Central Bureau of Investigation in the Rose Valley scam, several prominent leaders of Trinamool Congress have been interrogated, arrested and jailed, including Trinamool MP Sudip Bandopadhyay and MLA Tapas Pal.
Both were later granted bail by the court. The ED also questioned Bengali film personalities like Rituparna Sengupta and Prosenjit Chatterjee for acting in films funded by Gautam Kundu. Besides the bank accounts, the official said that the ED has also attached 24 acres of land at Ramnagar and Mahishdal in Purba Mednipur district in West Bengal and one flat at Dilkap Chambers in Mumbai and one acre of land at Jyoti Basu Nagar in Kolkata and one Hotel VIP of the Rose Valley group.
The ED had registered a case of money laundering on the basis of the FIR filed by West Bengal Police and the CBI against the Rose Valley group of companies. The Rose Valley ponzi scheme scam was unearthed in 2013. The group allegedly floated 27 companies to run various schemes and collected Rs 17,520 crore from depositors in West Bengal, Assam and Bihar.
The official said that during probe it was found that Rose Valley Group of Companies collected more than Rs 17,520 crore from public throughout India by luring depositors with false promise of high return/interest on their deposits out of which an amount of Rs 10,850 crore was refunded and remaining Rs 6,670 crore is still unpaid which constitutes the proceeds of crime.
Earlier ED had identified and attached properties under PMLA having tentative market value of around Rs 4,680 crore, which includes several luxurious resorts, hotels, vehicles, flats, lands, gold, jewellery, etc.
With this attachment the total market value of properties, so far attached in Rose Valley Group of Company cases has reached around Rs 4,750 crore. The ED had arrested Rose Valley Group promoter and Director Gautam Kundu in March 2015, who is still in judicial custody.