Jharkhand Chief Minister Hemant Soren finds himself embroiled in a legal saga as he faces a probe by the Enforcement Directorate (ED) regarding allegations of money laundering and involvement in a land scam. In a dramatic turn of events, Soren has lodged a First Information Report (FIR) against ED officials under the Scheduled Caste and Scheduled Tribe (Prevention of Atrocities, SC-ST) Act, accusing them of tarnishing his image.
The development follows a recent search conducted by the Enforcement Directorate at Soren’s residence in Delhi on Monday as part of their investigation into the case. During the operation, the agency reportedly seized Rs 36 lakh in cash, a BMW SUV, and several incriminating documents.
Confirming the filing of the FIR against ED officials, Ranchi Senior Superintendent of Police (SSP), Chandan Kumar Sinha, stated, “An FIR has been lodged against some senior ED officials… we got the application from the Chief Minister.”
According to reports, Soren alleges that the ED officials maligned his reputation by conducting the search without prior notification and disseminating false information, as outlined in his complaint.
Soren’s entanglement with the Enforcement Directorate stems from his involvement in a significant land scam case, for which he has been summoned multiple times for interrogation. The latest summons marks the tenth time Soren has been called in by the probe agency, with previous summons being disregarded.
The investigation revolves around allegations of a large-scale land fraud operation orchestrated by organized crime syndicates in Jharkhand, particularly concerning the illegal transfer of ownership of 4.55 acres of land under military jurisdiction in Ranchi.
The ED’s probe into three separate cases of land fraud is based on numerous First Information Reports filed by both Jharkhand Police and West Bengal Police against several individuals, including Pradip Bagchi, Bishnu Kumar Agarwal, and Bhanu Pratap Prasad, among others.
The ongoing legal battle underscores the escalating tensions between Soren and the Enforcement Directorate, further complicating the already intricate landscape of political and legal affairs in Jharkhand.