ED mulls probe into KoPT chief’s fund siphoning to Australia
The Enforcement Directorate (ED) is contemplating to probe into the alleged transfer of money worth crores of rupees to Australia by the chairman of Kolkata Port Trust RPS Kahlon.
ED had received intelligence input about the transfer of money and would take up the case to identify its source. “In a bid to ascertain the source of money that has been transferred to Australia it became essential to probe into the alleged irregularities of the port and the task has begun,” an ED officer said.
Kahlon was arrested on Wednesday night from a five-star hotel at Esplanade and Rs 20 lakh was recovered from him on that day. On Thursday the police had recovered Rs 4 lakh from his Bungalow at Hyde Road and Rs 11 lakh was recovered from the hotel room of DD Jagtap Duttaji, the director of Bharat Calcutta Containers terminal Limited, who was also arrested on charges of giving the bribe. “We are basically concerned over the transfer of money outside the country. The tasks that need to be done before taking up a case of financial irregularities have already started. As per the input the transfer of money had been taking place for the past few years. There are certain norms that need to be followed to transfer such a huge amount of money outside the country. In addition to that there are some additional formalities for IAS officers as they need to clarify that from where they have got the money. We are just waiting for the FIR,” the officer said adding that the ED officers are also in touch with the Kolkata Police in this connection. Meanwhile in connection with the bribery case the investigating officers of the city police’s detective department have gone through the footages of the surveillance cameras in the hotel. Sources said that in the video footage, the IAS officer was found coming out of a room with a bag in his hand. There was no bag in his hand when he had entered the place.
The police have also come to know about a person during interrogation. The person had acted as a “linkman” between Kahlon and Duttaji. A senior police officer said discrepancies were found in both of their statements during interrogation. Raids in the offices of the Kahlon continued on Friday. The police on Friday seized some documents from his offices and there are possibilities of questioning some more persons in this connection.
Meanwhile, he has been repatriated to his parent cadre - West Bengal. “Kolkata Port Trust Chairman has been repatriated to his parent cadre,” an official source in the Ministry of Shipping said.