Money laundering case: ED quizzes Varsha Raut for 10 hrs

Varsha Raut, wife of Shiv Sena MP Sanjay Raut, appeared before the Enforcement Directorate (ED) on Saturday in connection with a money laundering case linked to alleged irregularities in the redevelopment of Patra chawl in Goregaon and related transactions. She was questioned for around 10 hours.

The ED had arrested Raut on Monday alleging that he and his family were “direct beneficiaries” of Rs 1.06 crore. It had also claimed that a fresh trail of proceeds of crime worth Rs 2.25 crore is linked to the redevelopment of the chawl.

Sources said that after the ED sent Varsha a notice asking her to appear before it on Thursday, she arrived at the agency’s office at Ballard Pier around 10.45 am. She was allowed to leave by 8.45 pm.

Speaking to mediapersons, Varsha said, “I have cooperated with the agency… have answered all questions. So far, I have not been summoned again. Under any circumstances, we will not leave Uddhav Thackarey-led Shiv Sena.”

On Thursday, the ED had told the court that Rs 1.17 crore was paid in cash to land owners from whom Sanjay Raut had bought a plot of land in Alibag. The remaining Rs 1.08 crore was found to have been received in Varsha’s bank accounts.

The central agency is said to have questioned Varsha about the money she received in her bank account and the cash from which Sanjay Raut bought the property at Alibaug.

On Tuesday, the ED raided two locations in Mumbai in connection with the case. The agency has alleged that the arrested persons and other accused had converted money they had earned through the scam into cash.

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