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Bengal school jobs scam: ED recovers Rs 28 cr cash, 5kg gold from Arpita Mukherjee's second house

Bengal school jobs scam: ED recovers Rs 28 cr cash, 5kg gold from Arpita Mukherjees second house

Kolkata: The Arpita Mukherjee saga continues to get shadier as the Enforcement Directorate (ED) reportedly completed its 8-hour raid on the second flat of former Bengal education minister Partha Chatterjee's aide. According to sources, nearly Rs 28 crore in cash, at least 5 kg gold and several land deeds were recovered from Arpita's Belgharia flat.

The probe agency officials left Arpita Mukherjee's home in the Belgharia area of Kolkata early this morning with 10 trunks of cash.

According to news reports, not just in the rooms, money was stashed also in the flat's bathroom.

Sources say that ED officials used three note-counting machines to know the exact amount of cash seized from Mukherjee's second flat.

Partha Chatterjee and Arpita Mukherjee were arrested on July 23, a day after the first lot of cash was discovered at her home.

During last week's raid, the probe agency officials had recovered ₹ 21 crores in cash, a huge amount of foreign exchange, and gold bars worth ₹ 2 crores from Mukherjee's other flat in the city. They also found a diary with around 40 pages of notes that could provide crucial leads in the investigation.

So far, ₹50 crores in cash has been recovered from the two homes of Mukherjee. Some crucial documents have also been seized that are being examined by the authorities.

The raids were carried out as part of the ED's investigation into a money laundering case linked to a school jobs scam in the state.

Partha Chatterjee, a senior minister in Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee's cabinet and her close aide, is accused of having a role in allegedly illegal appointments of school teachers and staff in government-run schools when he was Education Minister.

Ms Mukherjee has reportedly admitted to investigators that the money was kickback received for transfers and for helping colleges get recognition.

"Partha used my house and that of another woman as a mini-bank. That other woman is also his close friend," Arpita Mukherjee reportedly told investigators.

Yesterday, the probe agency also questioned Trinamool Congress MLA Manik Bhattacharya, a former president of the West Bengal Board of Secondary Education.

Facing opposition's ire over Mr Chatterjee's arrest, Mamata Banerjee last week said that she doesn't support corruption and that the arrested minister should be punished if found guilty.

"If anyone is found guilty, he or she must be punished, but I condemn any malicious campaign against me. The truth must come out, but within a time frame," she had said.

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TAGS:Enforce DirectorateBengal school jobs scamArpita mukherjee
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