Millennium Post

ED attaches Rs 278-cr Gujarat castor oil plant in NSEL case

Enforcement Directorate (ED) on Thursday attached a Gujarat-based castor oil extraction plant worth over Rs 278 crore of an accused firm in the multi-crore rupee NSEL scam under anti-money laundering laws.

The factory is based in Kadi area of Mehsana district and has been identified by the agency to belong to a defaulting firm in the scam-- Ms N K Proteins.

“The estimated value of the attached oil plant is Rs 278.18 crore and attachment notices were served Thursday to the firm after orders in this regard were made on March 10 under the provisions of the Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA),” ED officials said.

This is one of the biggest single asset attachment made by the central agency in this case so far and the accused firm is allegedly one of the largest defaulters in the scam pegged at Rs 5,600 crore. The firms’ liabilities stand to the tune of an estimated over Rs 900 crore.

A top ED official in Mumbai, under which Ahmedabad zone falls, said “I don’t rule out the possibility of some more attachments.”

In December last year, the agency had attached a commercial property of the same firm worth Rs 14.22 crore which is based here.

The agency, in the same case, also attached a rice mill in Ludhiana worth Rs 41 crore. The mill is owned by another accused firm involved in the scam.

ED has so far attached total assets to the tune of over Rs 700 crore of defaulting firms in this case and is conducting a parallel probe alongside Mumbai Police and other investigative agencies.

The National Spot Exchange Limited’s payment troubles started after it was ordered by regulator Forward Markets Commission (FMC) in July 2013 to suspend spot trade in most of its contracts due to suspected trading violations.

The exchange could not settle the outstanding trades, sparking investigation by the police and regulators to find out whether the exchange had defrauded traders by not enforcing rules requiring sufficient collateral to be set aside.
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