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CBI arrests ex-ED jt director & IAS officer

A day after the CBI carried out searches at the residence of its former chief Amar Pratap Singh after registering an FIR against him, the investigative agency on Tuesday arrested J P Singh, the then Joint Director in Enforcement Directorate, who was facing the agency's probe for allegedly receiving bribe from accused in IPL cricket-betting scam investigated by him.

Singh, a 2000-batch Indian Revenue Service officer of the Customs and Excise wing, was being probed by CBI on the basis of a complaint received from the ED. He has now moved to his parent cadre as Commissioner, Customs and Excise wing, of Indian Revenue Service.

Besides Singh, CBI has also arrested enforcement officer Sanjay and two private persons-- Vimal Aggarwal and Chandresh Patel.

"It has been alleged that certain officers of Enforcement Directorate while investigating the cases of money laundering in betting and other such activities have allegedly demanded and accepted huge illegal gratification from the accused and suspect persons in the said cases," a statement from the CBI had said after registering a case against Singh.

The ED's Ahmedabad unit was probing the Rs 2,000-crore IPL betting scandal, and the Rs 5,000-crore money laundering case against alleged hawala operator Afroz Fatta, in which the suspects allegedly sought favours, said sources. CBI had said huge bribe amount was allegedly taken by these officers as quid pro quo for various acts of omission and commission.

The case against Singh and unknown ED officials has been registered under the provisions of criminal conspiracy under Indian Penal Code and Prevention of Corruption Act.

Sources said the ED Director had received multiple complaints from various quarters about the alleged demand for a bribe by the senior officials of its Ahmedabad unit. The complaints were forwarded to the CBI.

The CBI on Tuesday also arrested Principal Secretary in Chhattisgarh Government B L Agrawal and two others in connection with an alleged bribery case. It is alleged that Agrawal, an IAS officer of 1988 batch, wanted to "settle" a CBI probe against him. He is facing CBI investigation in two cases registered in 2010. The cases relate to the period he was Health Secretary in Chhattisgarh government. He has been charge sheeted in one while a probe is going on in the other case. He allegedly approached Bhagwan Singh, a resident of Noida, who took him to Syed Burhanuddin.

Burhanuddin, who has many aliases, claimed that he was working in Prime Minister's Office and would help him settle the case in his favour.
Burhanuddin aka OP Singh aka OP Sharma demanded Rs 1.5 crore as illegal gratification for his services, the CBI FIR has alleged.
A meeting was held by the trio on February 11, 2017, where Agrawal agreed to pay the amount to get relief in the cases against him, they said.
It is alleged that Agrawal sent Rs 60 lakh in four instalments to Bhagwan Singh using hawala channel. He expressed inability to arrange cash for remaining payment after which Burhanuddin and Singh agreed to accept two kilograms of gold as illegal gratification, the FIR alleged.

The agency has registered a case of criminal conspiracy and under Prevention of Corruption Act against Agrawal, Singh and Burhanuddin.
Union minister M Venkaiah Naidu on Tuesday said a thorough probe should be conducted into allegations that former CBI chief Amar Pratap Singh favoured controversial meat exporter Moin Qureshi.

"These allegations have to be thoroughly enquired into. It is a real shame for all of us that director of a premier investigative agency has now been charged," Naidu told reporters on sidelines of an event.
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