Senior NCP leader Praful Patel denies reports of property deal with gangster Iqbal Mirchi

The Enforcement Directorate has summoned Patel on October 18 in connection with its money laundering probe linked to alleged illegal assets of Mirchi.

Published: 15th October 2019 10:19 PM  |   Last Updated: 15th October 2019 10:19 PM   |  A+A-

Praful Patel (Photo | PTI)

By PTI

MUMBAI: Senior NCP leader Praful Patel on Tuesday rubbished as "mere speculation" reports about his alleged deal in Mumbai with gangster Iqbal Mirchi, saying there wasn't even "single paisa worth property transaction".

The Enforcement Directorate has summoned Patel on October 18 in connection with its money laundering probe linked to alleged illegal assets of Mirchi, who was an aide of fugitive underworld don Dawood Ibrahim.

"Documents may have been leaked to media. Obviously, you are in possession of some papers, which may have never been brought to my attention," Patel told reporters here.

Mirchi, a drug lord, died in 2013.

It was reported that his wife Hazra Memon entered into a property deal with the Patel family.

The ED has claimed that Millennium Developers, a firm run by Praful Patel, transferred two floors in Mumbai's Ceejay House to Hazra in 2007 "towards beneficial interest of Mirchi in the land" on which it was built.

"My family owns Millennium. No one else is a partner," Patel said.

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"There is not even a single paisa worth property transaction between the Patel family and Hazra Memon," the NCP leader added.

"Everything is with the court receiver of the Bombay High Court. We are nowhere directly looking after the property and neither are we directly in charge of it," Patel said.

Asked if he saw a political motive behind the ED action, Patel said, "You (media) have a better idea as some papers of which even I wasn't aware have come your way."

The former Union minister stressed that Ceejay House property was purchased by Patel's family in 1963 from the Scindias, the erstwhile royal family of Gwalior.

A dispute developed in the Patel family and a suit was filed in 1978 and the property passed under the control of the Bombay High Court's receiver, Praful Patel said.

"There were two hotels in adverse possession (encroaching) on our property known as Shriniketan, were owned by M K Mohammed. During the legal issue, Mohammed agreed to compromise and in 1988 and in 1990 he transferred the property to Hazra Iqbal Memon legally. There is a proper registration of this transfer duly registered at the office of sub-registrar here in Mumbai," Patel said.

"As per the order of Bombay High Court in 1997, we had arranged alternative accommodation for Hazra, like we had provided for others including some corporate houses such as Telco (now Tata Motors)," he said.

The building was declared unsafe by the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation, hence the court ordered its redevelopment, said the NCP leader.

The ED is expected to record Patel's statement under the Prevention of Money Laundering Act in connection with the property deal.

He has been questioned by the ED in another money laundering case linked to the aviation scam.

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