On July 27, the Enforcement Directorate (ED) seized another significant cache of cash and gold jewellery worth over Rs 27.8 crore during the second raid on a property related to TMC minister Partha Chatterjee’s close aide Arpita Mukherjee.The ED raided two flats in Arpita Mukherjee’s apartment in Belgharia, Kolkata, yesterday. The investigation agency discovered several banknotes in one of the units.
A truck and several cash counting equipment were called in to transport the massive sum of cash discovered from her flat.
“Bundles of cash were recovered from a shelf while inspecting Arpita’s flat located in Belgharia Town Club in Kolkata. It took several hours to count the notes with the help of bank officials and counting machines.”
Following the recovery, ANI published images of cash and jewellery provided by ED. A flood of memes and jokes resulted from the precisely positioned cash spelling ED and images of a mound of remaining cash and gold jewellery.
Meanwhile, Trinamool Congress national secretary and spokesperson Kunal Ghosh demanded that Partha Chatterjee be expelled from the party and the ministry.
Arpita Mukherjee is already in ED custody and is being questioned about her participation in the case. The currency was counted using at least four counting devices.
Besides cash and jewellery, ED agents found land-related paperwork from her home. Gold bars, silver coins, property deeds, and CDs were seized from her flat, according to sources.
“I have been auditing bank accounts for the last 30 years and never have I seen such amounts of cash in my life. This is very surprising that such a large sum of money was stacked in a flat in the complex we reside in.”
Local residents had assembled in great numbers to see the cash that had been found. The society’s gates were locked, and only people with identity cards were allowed in. A large crowd had also gathered outside the society.
The central investigation agency has sealed the residence with a notice posted at the flat’s gate.
“This premises has been sealed by Vipul Harsh, Assistant Director of Enforcement Directorate. All persons including the owner of the premises is prohibited from break open the seal or from any other act which shall hamper the investigation under the prevention of money laundering act linked to this premises without getting approval from Enforcement Directorate.”
Earlier, on July 22, the ED recovered nearly Rs 21 crore in cash, jewellery, and foreign currency from Arpita Mukherjee’s Tollygunge apartment. That flat was allegedly ‘gifted’ to her by detained TMC leader Partha Chatterjee.
The discovered funds are thought to represent the proceeds of the SSC teacher recruitment scandal, which occurred during Partha Chatterjee’s tenure as West Bengal’s education minister. The Calcutta High Court has ordered an investigation into this scam, and the CBI and ED have conducted searches and investigations as a result.
The ED has arrested both Partha Chatterjee and Arpita Mukherjee. Arpita told the ED that the money discovered in her homes belonged to Partha Chatterjee, who was utilising them as “mini banks.”