Bengal PDS scam likely to be around Rs 10,000 cr: ED

New Delhi, Jan 8 (UNI) The Directorate of Enforcement (ED) on Monday termed the alleged PDS scam in West Bengal “enormous” and claimed that Rs. 2000 crore has been transferred to Dubai either directly or through Bangladesh.

The investigation agency said the magnitude of the scam is suspected to the tune of Rs 9,000 to 10,000 Crore.

In a statement, the ED said “During the investigation, it has been revealed that proceeds of crime (POC) were generated and shared among various persons by adopting various modus operandi.”

The agency claimed that based on various FIRs registered by West Bengal Police, various private persons were allegedly found in unauthorised possession of PDS ration and involved in bogus procurement of paddy.

It said, “It was revealed that such persons laundered the proceeds of crime using the corporate identity of various companies, invested in the acquisition of various immovable properties, and also transferred part of said POC to certain companies under the control and beneficial ownership of (erstwhile food minister) Jyoti Priya Mallick”.

Shankar Adhya, a prominent leader of the Trinamool Congress (TMC), who is at the centre of the alleged multi-crore rupee scam in West Bengal, has been remanded to Enforcement Directorate custody for 14 days.

He was arrested by the agency following ED searches at properties linked to him and his family members.

The Enforcement Directorate disclosed that Shankar Adhya’s involvement surfaced through a letter from the arrested former Food Minister, Jyotipriya Mallick, who is also implicated in the ration corruption case.

In response to queries from the court, the ED unveiled that as many as 90 foreign exchange firms connected to Adhya had been identified.

Approximately Rs 2,000 crore was allegedly exchanged and sent abroad through these firms, primarily situated in border areas.

The ED raised concerns in court about the potential misuse of these funds, questioning the likelihood of “anti-national activities.”

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