New Delhi, Oct 23 (IANS) The Enforcement Directorate’s (ED) probe into property deals related to Iqbal Mirchi, fugitive don Dawood Ibrahim Kaskar’s close aide, has started revealing corporate connections with the agency summoning former promoter of Bhushan Steel over Rs 19 crore transaction.
A senior ED official related to the probe told IANS, “We have summoned Naveen Singal, former promoter of Bhushan Steel, for having financial dealings with the family members of Mirchi.”
Singal has been called for questioning on Friday. His statement will be recorded under the Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA).
According to the official, the ED action follows seizure of a receipt of Bhushan Steel for a money transfer of over Rs 19 crore during a search operation at the house of Junaid Iqbal Memon, son of late Mirchi, last week.
According to the ED official, Singal and his brother Brij Bhushan Singal, who were arrested earlier, had set up a firm in Delhi and they had financial transactions with Michi’s son. The official said the ED wanted to know for what purpose the promoters of the Bhushan Steel paid him the amount during 2010-11.
Bhushan Steel is also under investigation by several agencies, including the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) and the Serious Fraud of Investigation Office (SFIO).
However, Singal in a statement termed the allegation baseless. Neither Bhushan Steel nor any of its promoters had been involved in any such situation, it added.
“We would like to reiterate that all these allegations are baseless and the company nor its promoters has ever had any dealings with Iqbal Mirchi. In 2010, Sur Buildcon Pvt Ltd (now Globus Realinfra Pvt Ltd) was contemplating to buy a property on the fourth floor of Ceejay House in Worli, Mumbai, for which Bombay-based lawyers were engaged for carrying out due diligence,” the promoter said.
“However, the due diligence report didn’t come to be favourable and the purchase was never made. The law firm advised not to go ahead with the right to purchase the property and hence it was dropped,” it said.
In other developments, the ED on Tuesday arrested Humayun Merchant, an aide of Mirchi, who allegedly played a crucial role in negotiating on his behalf with Sunblink Real Estate. It also arrested Rinku Deshpande for receiving cheques related to deals in favour of fake dummy tenants.
On Friday, the ED had questioned former Union Minister Praful Patel for over 12 hours about his links with Millennium Developers, if he had ever met Merchant and if he had travelled to London during 2006-07.
The ED action is based on documents, unearthed during the probe, which show Millennium Developers, promoted by Patel and his wife Varsha, developed the 15-storeyed Ceejay House in Mumbai and then gave two floors of the building to Mirchi’s family members in 2006-07.
The ED has unearthed deals worth Rs 225 crore related to three buildings – Sea View, Marium Lodge and Rabia Mansion – spread over 1,573 sqm in Worli area of Mumbai.
Earlier, the agency arrested Bindra and Haroun Yusuf, former chairman of a dubious trust, both close aides of Mirchi, from Mumbai. According to the ED, while Bindra acted as a broker for the land deals, Yusuf facilitated them by transferring the money to a Trust.
Yusuf became a British national in 2004 and played role in carrying out illegal deals between Mirchi and real estate developers, which were fixed by Bindra for brokerage of around Rs 30 crore.