In a pre-dawn raid on Sunday, Income Tax officials conducted searches at the residence of Praveen Kakkad, a former Officer on Special Duty (OSD) to Madhya Pradesh Chief Minister Kamal Nath. The raid began at 3 am at Kakkad’s residence in Vijaynagar in Indore.
He previously worked in the state police before joining the Congress. Kakkad also worked for former union minister Kantilal Bhuria, who is the sitting MP from Ratlam Jhabua.
Simultaneous raids were also conducted at the residences of two others who had links with the Kamal Nath. They were identified as former advisor Rajendra Miglani and executives linked to his brother-in-law’s firm Moser Bayer and his nephew Ratul Puri’s company, according to news agency PTI. The searches, I-T officials said, were conducted at 50 locations in New Delhi, Bhopal and Indore.
Both Kakkar and Miglani had resigned from their posts just before the Lok Sabha polls were declared. Kakkad, a former Madhya Pradesh police officer, was appointed OSD to Nath after the Congress-led government came to power in the state last year. Kakkad’s family is associated with a number of businesses, including hospitality. The raids are also being conducted against Kolkata-based businessman Paras Mal Lodha, I-T officials said.
The searches are linked to suspected movement of hawala money during the ongoing polls season and tax evasion, they said.
Ratul Puri was last week grilled by the Enforcement Directorate in Delhi in connection with the Rs 3,6000 AgustaWestland helicopters purchase probe.
MP Congress’ media cell vice president Bhupendra Gupta, also a former OSD to Nath, charged, “The BJP government has been targeting opposition leaders across the country due to political enmity. Due to such act of political vendetta, Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister (N Chandrababu Naidu) and DMK leader M K Stalin had to stage protest against the Centre.”
However, the BJP hit back, saying thieves were now having a complaint against the ‘watchman’.
“Black money worth crores was recovered during the Income Tax department’s raid at the house of private secretary of Madhya Pradesh Chief Minister Kamal Nath. This has made one thing clear that those who are thieves have a complaint against the watchman,” BJP’s national general secretary Kailash Vijayvargiya said
मध्यप्रदेश के मुख्यमंत्री @OfficeOfKNath के निजी सचिव के घर से आयकर विभाग के छापे में करोड़ों की काली कमाई बरामद हुई,
इससे एक बात तो साफ़ हो गई कि जो चोर है उसे ही चौकीदार से शिकायत है।। pic.twitter.com/k6eDQILCGs
— Chowkidar Kailash Vijayvargiya (@KailashOnline) April 7, 2019
with PTI inputs