Shahjahan forcefully acquired Power of Attorney to sell land: ED charge sheet

Sources said that Shahjahan’s men used to get signatures of landowners forcefully authorising the suspended TMC leader to sell their land

Sheikh Shahjahan accused of collecting Rs 261 crore through illegal land grabbing (photo: IANS)
Sheikh Shahjahan accused of collecting Rs 261 crore through illegal land grabbing (photo: IANS)
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PTI

The Enforcement Directorate (ED) has accessed crucial documents on how suspended Trinamool Congress leader Sheikh Shahjahan sold land owned by the people of Sandeshkhali.

Sources said that Shahjahan’s men used to get the signatures of landowners forcefully on the Power of Attorney authorising Sheikh Shahjahan to sell their land to a third party.

This was over and above the other modus operandi adopted by them for grabbing land by rendering it useless after flooding it with saline water.

As per the ED’s findings, once Sheikh Shahjahan got the Power of Attorney, the land was sold to a third party at premium prices while the actual land owner was given a paltry sum.

Sources added that the ED mentioned this Power of Attorney modus operandi adopted by Shahjahan in the charge sheet field at a special court of the Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA) in Kolkata recently.

ED officials have tracked another source of income of Shahjahan where fisheries owners were compelled to sell the fish, mainly prawn and shrimp, produced at their farms only to agents chosen by the leader at a paltry price fixed by him.

Later, the same fish products were sold at a premium in the export market.

In its charge sheet filed last month, the ED accused Shahjahan of collecting Rs 261 crore through illegal land grabbing in Sandeshkhali.

So far the central agency has identified 59.5 acres of illegally-grabbed land.

The ED has so far confiscated assets and property worth Rs 27 crore owned by Shahjahan.