With the Enforcement Directorate (ED) continuing with its search operation till late on Wednesday evening in connection with the multi-crore coal smuggling case in West Bengal, the cash recovery amount by the central agency has increased to Rs 1.25 crore.
Although initially the ED was secretive about the identity of the business house at whose office the raid was conducted, later on Wednesday evening it surfaced that the cash recovery was made from at the registered office of Gajraj Towers Private Limited at 5A, Earle Street in South Kolkata. Raids were also conducted at the residence of the owner of the company at the posh Ballygunge area in South Kolkata.
As per records of the registrar of companies (ROC), the directors of Gajraj Towers Private Limited, Vikram Sikaria and Suchi Sikaria, are directors in many other companies and have diverse business interests starting from real estate, food chain, commodity broking to exports, among others. Vikram Sikaria has already been detained by the ED for questioning in this connection.
Sources said that the central agency has got specific clues that the money recovered from the office Gajraj Towers was part of the coal scam proceeds which the said business was supposed to divert to different channels.
It is learnt that the team conducting the raids on Wednesday at the residence and office of the said businessman was led by three special officers of ED who arrived in Kolkata from Delhi especially for this purpose.
Sources said that the name of the businessman in question came from the examination of different documents and statements given by different businessmen in connection with the coal smuggling case.
Sources said that the names of some other businessmen on this count have also surfaced and similar raid and search operations will be conducted at their premises as well in the days to come.
It is learnt that recently a person named Ratnesh Burma, a close associate of the prime accused in the coal scam, Binay Mishra, surrendered at a special CBI court in Asansol. Burma was reportedly involved in managing the accounts of the coal smuggling proceeds. During the course of interrogation, he gave crucial clues to the investigating officials.