In an unprecedented development, the Enforcement Directorate has attached immovable properties worth around Rs 6.45 core belonging to Pushpak Group’s entity, Pushpak Bullion, in Thane.
These include 11 flats in the Neelambari project in Thane, belonging to Shree Saibaba Grihanirmiti Pvt Ltd, which is owned and controlled by Shridhar Madhav Patankar. Here it is important to know that Patankar is the brother-in-law of Maharashtra Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray.
The action was taken against a money-laundering case registered in March 2017 against Pushpak Bullion and other group companies under the Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA). To date, ED has attached other properties worth Rs 21.46 crore owned by Mahesh Patel, Chandrakant Patel, their family members, and multiple companies controlled by them, in connection with the case.
The probe revealed that Mahesh Patel had siphoned off and layered funds of Pushpak Group’s company, Pushpak Realty, in connivance with Nandkishore Chaturvedi, who provided the ‘accommodation entry’. Under the garb of a sale, Pushpak Realty transferred funds to the tune of Rs 20.02 crore back to Chaturvedi after layering it through various connected/unconnected entities.
The ED said Chaturvedi, who operates several shell companies, further transferred these monies through his bogus company, Humsafar Dealer Pvt Ltd, under the cover of extending ‘unsecured loans’ of more than Rs 30 crore to Shree Saibaba Grihanirmiti Pvt Ltd.
ED got the evidence that money siphoned off by Mahesh Patel in connivance with Chaturvedi was finally parked in the realty projects of the housing company owned/controlled by Patankar, the CM’s brother-in-law.
The development came soon after Shiv Sena MP and its chief spokesperson Sanjay Raut accused the BJP of letting loose various central probe agencies against the state leaders in a bid to topple the Maha Vikas Aghadi government comprising Shiv Sena-Nationalist Congress Party-Congress.