Enforcement Directorate Summons Jharkhand Chief Minister Hemant Soren Amidst Opposition Meeting
In a development that has drawn attention and controversy, Jharkhand Chief Minister Hemant Soren, while participating in an opposition camp meeting in Mumbai, found himself in the spotlight as the Enforcement Directorate (ED) issued summonses for him to appear before them on September 9.
The summonses from the ED were served to Soren at a time when he was observed standing behind prominent Congress leaders Mallikarjun Kharge and Sonia Gandhi during the opposition meeting in Mumbai. The issuance of the summons has triggered a legal battle, with Soren challenging the ED's move in the Supreme Court, questioning the perspective of the "summon."
Currently, the apex court has not responded to Soren's plea, leaving the matter pending. In the midst of this legal dispute, the Enforcement Directorate has issued a third summons to Jharkhand's Chief Minister, although the specific case or investigation for which he is being called in remains undisclosed.
This is not the first time Hemant Soren has faced the scrutiny of the ED. In November of the previous year, the Jharkhand Mukti Morcha (JMM) leader and Chief Minister was subjected to questioning by the ED in connection with the alleged 'Rs 1000 crore' illegal mining case in Sahebganj. This case has already resulted in the arrest of his close confidante and assembly representative, Pankaj Mishra.
It is worth noting that the Enforcement Directorate has been actively investigating multiple cases in Jharkhand under the purview of the Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA). One prominent case involved the arrest of Jharkhand cadre IAS officer Pooja Singhal, who was implicated in a money laundering case related to the alleged diversion of MGNREGA funds during her tenure as the Khunti deputy commissioner in the years 2009-2010. Presently, she is in judicial custody, and her case has also led to the arrest of middleman Prem Prakash in connection with the same investigation.