ED Seizes Jharkhand CM’s Hemant Soren BMW Amid Missing Report: Search Underway

The Enforcement Directorate (ED) has requested the Delhi Police to locate Jharkhand Chief Minister Hemant Soren, according to a report in the Times of India on Tuesday, January 30. His whereabouts have been unknown for the past 24 hours.

On Monday, January 29, at 7 am, the ED team visited Soren’s residence in Delhi but did not find him there. The ED also seized the Jharkhand CM’s BMW. As of Tuesday morning, sources from the CM House stated that the Chief Minister has not returned yet.

In the meantime, an important meeting of ruling party legislators is scheduled to take place at the Chief Minister’s residence in Ranchi. It is anticipated that Chief Minister Hemant Soren may attend this meeting. Congress MLA Amba Prasad, speaking to the media on the night of January 29, mentioned that the CM would be present at the meeting.

The meeting of ruling party MLAs continued for nearly two hours late into the night on Monday. During the meeting, MLAs were advised to remain in Ranchi. Today’s meeting is regarded as crucial as it will involve discussions on the political future of the state. Hemant Soren has been summoned by the ED for questioning on January 31 at 1 pm.

Jharkhand Mukti Morcha (JMM) has issued a statement alleging that the central government and the BJP are conspiring to topple the coalition government in Jharkhand led by tribal youth Hemant Soren. They accuse the BJP of misusing constitutional institutions after political efforts failed to dislodge the government.

The Enforcement Directorate (ED) visited Jharkhand Chief Minister Soren’s residence in Delhi on Monday to question him regarding the Amba Prasad land scam. However, Soren was not found there. After examining the necessary documents, the investigating agency left late at night. A meeting of Grand Alliance MLAs was held at the CM House on the same night.

Congress MLA Amba Prasad assured that CM Hemant Soren would appear before everyone on Tuesday. He emphasized that nothing extraordinary occurred in the meeting and clarified that the CM was not kidnapped, dismissing such claims as “revenge politics.”

Congress MLA Viksal Kongdi echoed similar sentiments, stating that there was no significant discussion during the meeting, and everyone simply gathered for tea. He mentioned the possibility of another meeting on Tuesday afternoon and instructed all MLAs to remain in Ranchi.

Leaders in Ranchi remained silent and did not disclose the whereabouts of the Chief Minister during a meeting attended by several MLAs, including Mithilesh Thakur, Alamgir Alam, Irfan Ansari, Baby Devi, Mathura Prasad Mahato, Mangal Kalindi, and Savita Mahato. Despite claims that Hemant Soren was returning to Ranchi by road, his current location remained undisclosed by the leaders present.

Jharkhand Mukti Morcha (JMM) Central General Secretary Suprio Bhattacharya criticized the Enforcement Directorate’s (ED) actions as undemocratic. He stated that Hemant Soren had agreed to be questioned by the ED on January 31 at 1 pm via email. Bhattacharya emphasized that the ED’s proceedings are undemocratic.

On Monday, JMM activists organized a march from Ranchi’s Morhabadi area to the Raj Bhavan, passing through the CM House, to protest against the ED’s actions. During the protest, slogans were raised against the ED and the central government.

Conspiracy to impose President’s rule: Reacting to the actions of the Enforcement Directorate (ED), Congress state president Rajesh Thakur stated that rumors about the Chief Minister’s disappearance are being spread falsely. The Chief Minister has already scheduled an appointment for January 31, so such rumors are baseless. Thakur emphasized that these rumors aim to create a sense of lawlessness in the state and pave the way for imposing the President’s rule, which is a conspiracy that they will not allow to succeed.

Nishikant Dubey targets Soren: BJP MP Nishikant Dubey took to social media to express his views, stating that he had previously mentioned that the Advocate General of the Jharkhand government would label Chief Minister Hemant Soren, son of Jharkhand’s An Ban and Shan Bahadur Shibu Soren, as a fugitive. Dubey’s statement seems to align with recent developments.

Media reports suggest that Hemant Soren either fled from Delhi, fell ill, or was kidnapped. Dubey criticized the Governor of Jharkhand, suggesting that he should dismiss his security officer, indicating a failure in maintaining law and order in Jharkhand.

BJP’s stance: Responding to the ED’s actions in Delhi, Jharkhand BJP spokesperson Pratul Shahdev highlighted that there are corruption allegations against Hemant Soren. He questioned why Soren is evading the investigation if he was innocent. Shahdev accused the Grand Alliance leaders of politicizing the issue unnecessarily, asserting that the raid on the CM’s residence was inevitable given the circumstances.

On January 20, the Enforcement Directorate (ED) interrogated Hemant Soren for approximately seven and a half hours at the CM House. During the interrogation, the agency questioned him about his sources of income and the details provided in his income tax returns. The inquiry pertained to the ownership of 8.46 acres of land behind DAV Bariatu.

Following the questioning, CM Soren addressed his supporters and stated that he had responded to all of the ED’s inquiries. He expressed readiness to address any further questions posed to him. Subsequently, the ED requested Soren to specify the time and location for another round of interrogation, scheduled between January 27 and 31.

This is how the scam unfolded:

The land-related case came to light when Ali, a Ranchi official, was arrested by the ED. On November 4, 2022, the ED conducted raids at several locations belonging to Vishnu Agarwal in connection with the land scam. Subsequently, Vishnu Aggarwal was summoned for questioning three times.

In addition to the land matters, Hemant Soren’s name also surfaced in the Cheshire Home Road land purchase. During the investigation, the ED uncovered the role of Prem Prakash in this land deal. Furthermore, fraud was exposed in the purchase of 9.30 acres of special palace land in Pugadu.

How the CM was implicated:

On July 19, 2022, during a raid at the residence of Pankaj Mishra, the Chief Minister’s MLA representative, it was revealed that the ED had discovered a checkbook related to CM Hemant Soren’s bank account. The ED possesses several pieces of evidence, including two blank checks signed by the Chief Minister, which necessitate questioning.

The chargesheet filed by the ED in the PMLA court mentions the involvement of the Chief Minister and his family. Despite the arrest of Prem Prakash, further revelations continue to emerge in the case of the land scam, implicating the CM and his family.

Niyati Rao

Niyati Rao is a seasoned writer and avid consumer who specializes in crafting informative and engaging articles and product reviews. With a passion for research and a knack for finding the best deals, Niyati enjoys helping readers make informed decisions about their purchases.