CBI conducts raids in Bengal in illegal coal trade case
The CBI on Wednesday carried out raids at 10 locations in West Bengal's Asansol, Durgapur and Raniganj areas in connection with a case of illegal coal mining and theft from Eastern Coalfield Limited (ECL).
According to sources, around 75 CBI officials were engaged in the operation, that included searches at the houses of racket 'kingpin' Anup Majhi alias Lala and his accomplice Binoy Mishra's relatives.
On Monday, the Enforcement Directorate (ED) had conducted raids at 12 locations across the state in connection with the coal scam, including searches at offices and residential addresses of businessman Ganesh Bagadia and Sanjay Singh.
The raids were conducted from Monday morning in Kolkata's Lake Town area, Garia, Konnagar's Kanaipur in Hoogly district, and North 24-Parganas in connection with the illegal trading of coal.
Bagadia and Singh were allegedly linked to Majhi, who runs the syndicate in connivance with Mishra.
On November 28 last year, the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) Anti-Corruption Branch had conducted raids at 45 locations in West Bengal, Bihar, Jharkhand, and Uttar Pradesh in connection with the coal-smuggling racket.
The agency officials had raided the offices and homes of Majhi in Asansol, Durgapur, and Raniganj in Burdwan district, as well as at Bishnupur in Kolkata's adjoining South 24-Parganas district.
Searches were also carried out at houses of some accomplices of Majhi, who runs his illegal operations at the open cast colliery belts along the Bengal-Jharkhand border.
Meanwhile, Income Tax officials also conducted a raid at the house and hotel of ex-legislator Mohammad Sohrab at Burrabazar area on Wednesday in connection with the cattle-smuggling racket in Bengal and disproportionate assets case, sources said.
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