Updated: October 13, 2021 7:08:40 am
The Delhi Police’s Crime Branch has initiated a probe against 32 Tihar jail officials and former promoters of Unitech Ltd Sanjay Chandra and Ajay Chandra for allegedly “colluding” inside the jail, said police Tuesday.
Police have booked them under sections of the Prevention of Corruption Act and the IPC.
The Supreme Court on August 26 directed Delhi Police Commissioner Rakesh Asthana to investigate the charges in a report by the Enforcement Directorate, which had stated that the Chandra brothers, who were lodged in Tihar jail, were having a free run and were “flouting the jail manual” in connivance with officials.
The ED had accused the brothers — who were arrested following complaints of siphoning homebuyers’ money — of “engaging in illegal activities by flouting the jail manual… making transfers of assets and dissipating the proceeds of crime… influencing witnesses, and attempting to derail the investigation”.
The court had also said the ED’s report on conduct of the Chandra brothers and connivance of jail staff in flouting orders and undermining jurisdiction of the court have raised some “serious and disturbing” issues.
The court directed that the jail authorities “have acted absolutely in connivance with them… We have lost faith in the Tihar jail authorities. They are sitting in the capital city and enforcing the orders of the Supreme Court and this is happening under their nose. Absolutely shameless of the Superintendent of the Tihar jail is all we want to say.”
Chinmoy Biswal, the Delhi Police PRO, said both brothers were shifted from the central jail, Tihar, to Arthur Road jail and Taloja central jail in Mumbai.
The Police chief submitted a report on September 28 naming the jail officials. On October 6, the Supreme Court granted Asthana permission to conduct a “full-fledged criminal investigation” into the allegations of collusion and ordered the immediate suspension of jail officials named in his report.
“We have registered an FIR with the Crime Branch under sections of the Prevention of Corruption Act and the IPC. During the enquiry, names of 32 officials from Tihar jail number 7 have come up. They were found to be complicit with the Chandra brothers in this matter,” said Biswal. Police Tuesday said they have written to Director General at Tihar jail and Home Ministry to take further legal action in the case.
Last week on Monday, Sanjay Chandra’s wife Preeti Chandra and his father Ramesh Chandra were arrested by the ED in connection with the Unitech money laundering case.
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