New Delhi: The Enforcement Directorate has carried out a search operation at the premises of a Punjab-based cable businessman under the Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA).
According to an official statement, the ED raids on Thursday November 26 were carried out in Ludhiana, Mohali, Chandigarh and Nawanshahr at the residential plot of Surinder Pal Singh, who is a former Chief Engineer of the Punjab Mandi Board and Greater Mohali Area Development Authority (GMADA). The main business premises of his company M/s Jhujhar Construction and Travels Pvt. Ltd and M/s Fastway Transmission Pvt Ltd were also searched. During the searches, a large number of incriminating documents, digital devices, Rs 10.30 lakhs in Indian currency, and foreign currency equivalent to USD 4000 were seized. A total of 5 lockers and FDRs totalling Rs 6.70 crore have also been frozen by the ED.
The ED initiated a money laundering investigation on the basis of an FIR registered and a charge-sheet filed by the Vigilance Bureau, Punjab against Surinder Pal Singh, and others. In the FIR it was alleged that Singh misused his official position and allotted multi-crore projects to his favoured firms/companies, thereby ensuring illegal monetary gains for himself, his family members and to the companies/firms/entities to which the illegal favours were extended by him.
The ED investigation revealed that the modus operandi adopted by Singh was to set up companies in the name of his family members and his close associates.
He used the bank accounts of these companies for depositing the bribes received by him. These proceeds of crime were then moved amongst the bank accounts of these companies in an attempt to launder them. It was also found that a part of these proceeds from the companies owned and controlled by Surinder Pal Singh and his family members were connected to Gurdeep Singh Jhujhar –owner of Jhujhar Transport group and Fastway group.
Further investigation is in progress, the ED said.