The Enforcement Directorate (ED) has taken Anil Kumar Aggarwal, the director of Bharat Papers Limited, into custody in connection with an ongoing investigation into a money laundering case in Jammu and Kashmir, officials reported on Wednesday.
Aggarwal, a resident of Kathua district in Jammu and Kashmir, was apprehended on Tuesday night as part of the ongoing probe into an alleged loan fraud amounting to Rs 200 crore inflicted on a consortium of banks. The State Bank of India (SBI) led the consortium, with other participating banks including Jammu and Kashmir Bank, Punjab National Bank, and Karur Vysya Bank, according to officials.
On Wednesday, the ED presented an application through special public prosecutor Ashwani Khajuria in the court of the special judge for anti-corruption (CBI cases) in Jammu, Bala Jyoti, seeking a seven-day remand of the accused.
The case originated from an FIR registered by the Anti-Corruption Bureau (ACB) and
Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) in Jammu against Bharat Papers Limited and its directors, including Aggarwal, on February 12, 2020. The FIR stemmed from a complaint filed by SBI, Ludhiana (Punjab).
The ED initiated an investigation under the Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA) on March 31 last year, based on the FIR. The agency conducted searches at the premises of Bharat Papers Limited and various other locations, gathering evidence including documents, bank account analyses, and company director information.
A forensic audit report indicated Aggarwal’s involvement in activities associated with proceeds of crime and money laundering offenses, officials stated. The investigation revealed that the company allegedly misused sanctioned loan funds, diverting them for personal use and illegitimate gains through bogus entities and invoices, they added.
Aggarwal, identified as one of the main directors of Bharat Papers Limited, allegedly played a key role in orchestrating a Rs 200 crore fraud on the consortium of banks. Despite being questioned on February 1 and February 6, he reportedly provided evasive responses, indicating a lack of cooperation in the investigation. Officials concluded that Aggarwal’s activities were linked to the proceeds of crime acquired through criminal conspiracy and cheating to siphon off funds from the consortium of banks in the form of term loans and cash credit limits.