In an effort to get Sehgal Hossain for questioning in the multi-crore West Bengal cattle smuggling scam, the Enforcement Directorate (ED) has now approached a special Delhi court for the production warrant of the bodyguard of Trinamool Congress strongman Anubrata Mondal.
ED sources said that the matter will come up for hearing at special Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA) court at Rouse Avenue, New Delhi, on Monday.
The development comes following the rejection of a plea by the ED on this count by Calcutta High Court’s single-judge bench of Justice Tirthankar Ghosh on October 11.
While rejecting the ED’s plea, Justice Ghosh observed that without a proper and valid production document the central agency could not be allowed to take Hossain to New Delhi and only the PMLA court there can issue that production warrant.
In his observation, he took an objection to the ED’s process of keeping the option of multiple courts open on this count.
ED sources said that although their sleuths have the court permission to interrogate Hossain while he is in judicial custody at Asansol Special Correctional Home in West Burdwan district, the limited period is not enough to crack him and get answers on crucial points especially the money trail angle.
“That is exactly why we want to take him to New Delhi and question him at the agency’s headquarters there,” an ED official said.
Meanwhile, the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI), which is conducting a parallel probe in the cattle smuggling scam, has mentioned in its fresh charge sheet the names of three companies.
Anant Tradecom Private Limited, Hoque Mercantile Private Limited and Hoque Industries Private Limited were basically shell companies meant for the diversion of cattle smuggling proceeds by the kingpin, Enamul Hoque.
In the charge sheet, the CBI for the first time mentioned Mondal as the direct beneficiary of the scam.
Mondal is also currently under judicial custody at the same correctional home as Hossain in Asansol