Now, ED’s summons to Rabri, son Tejashwi in IRCTC case

New Delhi: The Enforcement Directorate (ED) on Wednesday said it had issued fresh summons to RJD chief Lalu Prasad Yadav’s wife Rabri Devi and their son Tejashwi Yadav in the 2006 IRCTC hotels’ contract case.

“We have issued fresh summons to Rabri Devi and Tejashwi Yadav to appear before the agency on October 10 and 11 for questioning in the ongoing probe in the case,” an ED official told IANS.

Following a CBI FIR, the agency had registered a case on July 27 under the Prevention of Money Laundering Act against Lalu Prasad and others for alleged money transactions through shell companies. The CBI had registered a case against Lalu Prasad and his family members on July 5.

On September 7, the ED had questioned Ahluwalia Contractors and its promoter Bikramjeet Singh Ahluwalia and summoned Sujata Hotels owners Vikram and Vinay Kochhar for questioning.

As the then Railway Minister in 2006, Lalu Prasad handed over maintenance contract for two Indian Railways Catering and Tourism Corporation (IRCTC) hotels at Ranchi in Jharkhand and Puri in Odisha to Sujata Hotels company of the Kochhars after allegedly receiving a bribe in the form of a plot of prime land in Patna in Bihar.

The Central Bureau of Investigation claimed that the kickback was paid through a “benami” company owned by Sarala Gupta, wife of RJD MP Prem Chand Gupta.

The CBI FIR alleged that Vinay Kochhar sold a commercial three-acre plot of land in Patna through 10 sale deeds on February 25, 2005, for Rs 1.47 crore to Delight Marketing Company, in which Sarla Gupta was a Director.

The FIR alleged that the land was sold at a price below circle and market rates and was falsely shown as agricultural land to evade substantial stamp duty.

During the CBI preliminary inquiry, the agency allegedly found that the said land was sold by the Kochhars to Delight Marketing and the payment was arranged through Ahluwalia Contractors and its promoter Bikramjeet Singh Ahluwalia.

On Tuesday, the CBI had issued summons — third during this month — to Rashtriya Janata Dal (RJD) chief Lalu Prasad and his son Tejashwi, a former Deputy Chief Minister of Bihar.

In the latest summons, the CBI had asked both RJD leaders to visit its headquarters on Lodhi Road in south Delhi on October 3 and 4, respectively, to join investigation in the case. The CBI had issued summons to the two on September 22 and September 7 as well.