CBI questions Himachal CM in assets case

Himachal Pradesh Chief Minister Virbhadra Singh
Himachal Pradesh Chief Minister Virbhadra Singh

NEW DELHI (TIP): Himachal Pradesh Chief Minister Virbhadra Singh was on June 9 questioned by the CBI in connection with allegations of acquiring wealth disproportionate to his known sources of income.

Singh (81) appeared before the investigators in the morning, official sources said.

The probe against the Himachal chief minister and his family was initiated following allegations against him during his tenure as the Union Steel Minister between 2009 and 2011.

After Singh’s questioning, sources said the CBI has a fool-proof case against him and his associates on how they acquired assets in the name of wife and children of the chief minister.

Sources said Singh denied any involvement and investigators are now planning to soon examine those named in the FIR.

According to the FIR, Singh had accumulated assets worth Rs 6.03 crore in his name and in the name of his family members which were found to be disproportionate to his known sources of income.

The FIR filed with a designated court in Delhi under the Prevention of Corruption Act named Singh, wife Pratibha, LIC agent Anand Chauhan and Chunni Lal Chauhan. CBI had claimed that Singh had invested his unaccounted income in LIC policies in his name and in the name of his wife and other family members through a private person by showing the same as agricultural income. “This was done by creation of a MoU purportedly dated June 15, 2008, for maintenance of an apple orchard, with the said private person (Chauhan) for a period of three years. The private person had allegedly deposited Rs five crore cash (approx) in his own bank account and debited the same through cheques for purchasing various LIC policies in their names,” the CBI had said. In March, the ED attached assets of Singh worth Rs 7.93 crore, including a flat in a posh locality here, in connection with a money laundering case. The ED had filed a money laundering case on the basis of a CBI FIR.

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