Lucknow: The Enforcement Directorate (ED) officials started questioning Gayatri Prajapati, mining minister in the former Akhilesh Yadav government, in Uttar Pradesh’s illegal sand mining scam case.
A senior ED official told media, “We started questioning Prajapati at 11 a.m. under the Prevention of Money laundering Act.” Prajapati, who is under judicial custody in Lucknow Jail in an alleged gangrape case, was recently shifted to Lucknow’s King George’s Medical College after he complained of illness.
The ED action comes a week after the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) filed a case against Prajapati and several IAS officers in a case of illegal sand mining in Fatehpur district between 2013 to 2014. Last month, the CBI carried out searches at several properties owned by Prajapati in Amethi.
The ED has taken the court’s permission to quiz the former minister. The agency also plans to grill Prajapati sons — Anil and Anurag — in coming days to identify the money trail in the case. The official said that the ED will also question Prajapati about his role in giving the sand mining licences to Shiv Singh and Sukhraj.
The agency suspects that the money generated from Shiv Singh and Sukhraj, the alleged beneficiaries of the licences, was used to buy properties in cities like Lucknow, Rae Bareli and Amethi.