Ranchi (Jharkhand) [India]: Jharkhand IAS officer Chhavi Ranjan on Monday appeared before the Enforcement Directorate (ED) for questioning in connection with alleged land scam cases.
Ranjan was questioned for about 10 hours, the agency informed. The IAS officer was asked to join the investigation again on May 1 by the ED, said the probe agency.
Earlier, she was questioned by the agency on April 13, after searches were carried out at multiple locations in Jharkhand in connection with a land scam case.
She received summons to appear before the agency after the ED said it found forged documents on April 14.
ED also conducted raids at multiple locations in West Bengal, Bihar, and Jharkhand, including his residence in Ranchi. According to sources, the IAS officer, while serving as the deputy commissioner of Ranchi, allegedly used the Kolkata registry office for forgery in the Army land case.
So far, seven accused persons have been arrested in the land scam case of the ED. They were produced in court and sentenced to judicial custody.
Pradeep Bagchi, whom the ED arrested in connection with the case, claimed he was the rightful owner of 4.55 acres of land.
He also produced documents to show that in 1932, his family purchased the land and the registry was done at the Kolkata land registry office.
Interestingly, however, the documents mention the state as West Bengal, while in 1932, it was known as just Bengal Province (the unified Bengal), sources said. It was renamed West Bengal in 1947.
Similarly, at several places in the document, Postal Index Number (PIN) Code has been mentioned along with the addresses of the witnesses, seller and purchaser. The PIN was introduced in 1972.
Again, in some places, Bhojpur has been mentioned as a native district of one of the witnesses of the sale deed. However, Bhojpur came into existence in 1972.
The copy of that document was also said to have been interpolated in the land records of the Kolkata registry office. During the course of the investigation, the ED said it sent all such documents as well as land registers of the Kolkata registrar’s office for forensic tests.
Reports of the test are expected in two or three days.
According to ED, the nexus has allegedly sold multiple plots by forging documents. Even the rightful owners are unaware that their plots have been sold, sources said.