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Mumbai Congress chief facing graft probe, court told

Mumbai, July 15 (Calcutta Tube) The income tax department and Maharashtra’s anti-corruption bureau (ACB) have initiated separate probes into corruption charges against Mumbai Congress chief and legislator Kripa Shankar Singh, the Bombay High Court was informed Thursday.

The two investigating agencies said this in their affidavits filed on a public suit by social activist Sanjay Tiwari, alleging that the legislator had amassed illegal wealth.

Singh, who is a former minister of state for home, however, denied the allegations levelled against him by Tiwari’s petition, claiming that they were politically motivated.

A division bench of Chief Justice Mohit Shah and Justice S.C. Dharmadhikari, directed the other respondents in the case to file their replies and posted the matter for hearing Aug 5.

The ACB Additional Deputy Commissioner of Police S.B. Suryawanshi said that a probe into the matter was in progress.

‘The ACB has started an inquiry into the matter…the government has been informed about the allegations made by the petitioner. The property documents of Singh and his family members are being verified,’ he added.

The affidavit pointed out that one of the main complaints against Singh and his family members related to money laundering and his close links with Madhu Koda, a former Jharkhand chief minister.

‘The same is already under investigation by central agencies. The property of the respondents (Singh and family members) is spread in more than one state,’ it said.

The IT department’s Deputy Director (investigations-unit VIII) K.R. Mangal said that they had initiated a probe since March this year following a complaint by Tiwari in February.

Seeking an inquiry into Singh’s alleged huge wealth, Tiwari said that it was amassed using political clout and was completely unconnected to any known sources of income.

He further contended that in 2006, when Singh was an Congress observer for Jharkhand, he was instrumental in installing the Madhu Koda government.

Presently, Koda is in jail along with his former ministerial colleague, Kamlesh Singh.

Kamlesh Singh’s daughter Ankita is married to Kripa Shankar Singh’s son, Narendra, alias Sanjay Singh.

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