Initiating fresh proceedings in the multi-crore scam involving Srijan Mahila Vikas Sahyog Samiti Limited, the Enforcement Directorate (ED) on Saturday, May 30, attached assets worth Rs 14.32 crore belonging to the Bihar-based NGO.
The seized properties include as many as 20 flats in Noida, Ghaziabad, Pune, Ranchi, Bhagalpur and Patna, 18 shops in Noida, Ghaziabad and Bhagalpur, 33 plots in Bihar, a car and Rs 4.84 crore in bank accounts.
The ED, who has been probing the Rs 1,000 crore Srijan scam on the basis of an FIR registered by the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI), confiscated the ill-gotten assets under the provisions of the Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA).
ED attaches under PMLA, 20 flats, 18 shops, 33 plots, a volkswagon car and balances in bank account totaling to Rs. 14.32 crores belonging to Srijan Mahila Vikas Sahyog Samiti Limited and others in a case of embezzlement of Government funds.— ED (@dir_ed) May 30, 2020
ED shares details of its investigation
As per the agency, funds to the tune of Rs 557 crore were siphoned off from government accounts after being illegally transferred to the bank accounts of the NGO. The alleged laundering of money took place between 2003 and 2004.
"Late Manorma Devi was the secretary of the society (NGO) since inception till her death on February 13, 2017. She was the main accused, who along with others involved in misappropriating the government funds in collusion with government and bank officials," the ED was quoted as saying by news agency PTI.
Further, the ED noted that the money transferred into the bank accounts of Srijan Mahila Vikas Sahyog Samiti Limited was redirected to various entities through RTGS, cash and cheques.
"These illegally transferred funds were also utilized to acquire properties in the name of family members of Manorma Devi, government officials and others," the ED added.
What is Srijan scam?
The scam involving Srijan Mahila Vikas Sahyog Samiti Limited came to light in 2017. The NGO, which used to provide vocational training to women, allegedly pilfered funds meant for government welfare schemes from the bank accounts of the Bhagalpur district administration.
An initial probe by local police indicated that the NGO, based at Sabour in Bhagalpur district of Bihar, procured cheque-books from banks and forged signature of the district magistrate to transfer government funds to its account.