August 28, 2023
In a recent development, the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) has launched a high-profile investigation into an alleged corruption case. This case involves a senior official of the Enforcement Directorate (ED), the chief of a prominent hotel chain, and an employee of Air India. The case centres around suspicions of influencing an ongoing investigation into the Delhi liquor policy money laundering case.
The individuals named in the case are Pawan Khatri, Assistant Director of the ED, Vikramaditya Singh, the chief of a well-known hotel chain, and Deepak Sangwan, an employee of Air India.
The ED has accused Pawan Khatri and Nitesh Kohar, an ED clerk, of receiving a substantial bribe of ₹5 crore through intermediaries to allegedly assist Amandeep Singh Dhall in the investigation.
Amandeep Singh Dhall, who was arrested by the ED earlier this year in connection with the Delhi liquor policy money laundering case, had allegedly given ₹5 crore to Praveen Vats, a Chartered Accountant, between December 2022 and January 2023. The purpose of this payment was reportedly to facilitate assistance in the ED investigation against Dhall.
According to the complaint submitted to the CBI on August 7 by the ED, Praveen Vats and Deepak Sangwan are accused of accepting ₹5 crore from Amandeep Singh Dhall, ostensibly to aid him in the money laundering case by influencing Pawan Khatri. The ED’s allegations further assert that Vats distributed ₹50 lakhs as an advance to Sangwan and Khatri in mid-December.
As Amandeep Singh Dhall was apprehended in March of this year, his father allegedly requested a refund of the funds. On June 29, an amount of ₹1 crore was purportedly returned to him, with Pawan Khatri reportedly present during the transaction.
how it happened
Vikramaditya Singh, who heads the hotel chain, has claimed that Amandeep Singh Dhall had sought his assistance, leading Singh to involve Praveen Vats. According to Singh, Vats informed him that after deducting expenses with ED officials and other related costs, the remaining funds would be evenly divided between them.
In response to the complaint submitted by the ED, the CBI has formally registered a corruption case against the individuals involved. This includes Pawan Khatri, Nitesh Kohar, Deepak Sangwan, Praveen Vats, Vikramaditya Singh, Amandeep Singh Dhall, and Birender Pal Singh. The CBI is now tasked with thoroughly investigating the alleged bribery and its impact on the ongoing ED investigation into the Delhi liquor policy money laundering case.
The case has sent shockwaves through various sectors, raising questions about the integrity of high-ranking officials and their potential influence on sensitive investigations.
As the CBI begins its investigation, the nation waits to see how this complex web of allegations will unravel and its impact on the broader fight against corruption and money laundering.