Land-for-jobs 'scam': ED arrests 'associate' of Lalu Prasad's family

Land-for-jobs 'scam': ED arrests 'associate' of Lalu Prasad's family

New Delhi : The Enforcement Directorate has arrested Amit Katyal, an alleged associate of RJD chief Lalu Prasad and his son Tejashwi Yadav, in connection with a money laundering investigation into the alleged land-for-jobs scam case, official sources said on Saturday. Katyal was detained by the agency on Friday and was arrested after questioning, they said. He is expected to be produced before a local court where the ED will seek his custody for interrogation.

Sources said Katyal was evading the agency's summons for questioning for about two months. The Delhi High Court had recently rejected his plea to quash the ED summons against him in this case. The premises of Katyal were raided by the federal agency in March when it had also covered the premises of Lalu Prasad, Bihar Deputy Chief Minister Tejashwi Yadav, his sisters and others.

Katyal, according to the ED, is a "close associate" of the Rashtriya Janata Dal (RJD) supremo as well as a former director of A K Infosystems Private Limited. A K Infosystems Private Limited is allegedly a "beneficiary company" in the case and its registered address is a residential building in south Delhi's New Friends Colony, which was being used by Tejashwi Yadav.

The alleged scam pertains to the period when Prasad was the railway minister in the UPA-1 government. It is alleged that from 2004 to 2009, several people were appointed to Group "D" positions in various zones of the Indian Railways and in lieu, these people transferred their land to the family members of the then railway minister Prasad and A K Infosystems Private Limited.

The ED case, filed under the criminal sections of the PMLA, stems from a complaint lodged by the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI). According to the CBI, no advertisement or public notice was issued for appointment, but some residents of Patna were appointed as substitutes in different zonal railways in Mumbai, Jabalpur, Kolkata, Jaipur and Hazipur.

As a quid pro quo, the candidates, directly or through their immediate family members, allegedly sold land to Prasad's family members at highly discounted rates, up to one-fourth to one-fifth of the prevailing market rates, the CBI has alleged.


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