“Banquet on Govt Land, Abuse of Power”: ED Requests Hemant Soren’s Custody to Be Extended

The Enforcement Directorate informed the court on Monday that Hemant Soren, the former chief minister of Jharkhand, and his architect partner were planning to construct a banquet hall and other such amenities on 8.5 acres of government property. The central agency said that the deal’s deeds, register, and other papers were faked in order to request an extension of the JMM leader’s custody.

A land swindle involving many government-owned property parcels that Soren and his associates are suspected of grabbing and giving to the land mafias has led to his detention.

“The scrutiny of the WhatsApp chat between Binod Singh and (Shri) Hemant Soren has led to the identification of a plan and map of proposed banquet, shared by Binod Singh to (Shri) Hemant Soren on April 6, 2021,” the Enforcement Department (ED) said in its plea, which News18 was able to see. The projected banquet’s site, as shown in the aforementioned design, corresponds with the 8.5 acres of property that (Shri) Hemant Soren has unlawfully bought and obtained.

Soren’s accomplice is an architect named Binod Singh, according to reports. On February 10, a survey under section 16 of the PMLA, 2002 was also carried out in the presence of representatives from the Circle Office, Baragai, Anchal Ameen, Binod Singh, and Bhanu Pratap Prasad. The results confirmed that the location of the banquet, as per Binod Singh’s plan, and the 8.5 acres of land that Shri Hemant Soren has acquired, which is the subject of the investigation, are the same. In addition, no large parcel of land is available in the mentioned locality where such a large structure can be planned for construction, according to the ED.

Additionally, Soren is charged by the ED with “blatant misuse of power.” The petition further said, “It has already been brought into kind notice of this office that there has been blatant misuse of power in hampering and frustrating the evidence linked with this case after issuance of the very first summons to Shri Hemant Soren.”

Please take note that Shri Hemant Soren was initially summoned by this Ld. Court on August 8, 2023, with an attendance date of August 14, 2023. Raj Kumar Pahan petitioned the Circle Officer, Baragai, on August 16, 2023, claiming he had been the owner of the land and that some people had obtained an illegal jamabandi of it. He further asked the Circle Officer to take the appropriate steps to prevent him from being forced to leave the land, according to the ED.

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