Will the shenanigans of Unitech promoters end now with their arrest?
The Enforcement Directorate (ED) on Tuesday arrested jailed promoter brothers of the Unitech realty group — Sanjay Chandra and Ajay Chandra — in a money laundering case of more than Rs.2,000 crore by parking money in Cyprus and Cayman Island like tax-havens. The brothers are in jail for more than four years for cheating home buyers of more than Rs.800 crore in a case registered by Delhi Police. Unitech founder Ramesh Chandra, father of Sanjay and Ajay, and Sanjay’s wife Preeti Chandra were already arrested by ED in October.
Sanjay and Ajay will be brought to Delhi by ED from Mumbai jails. The brothers were shifted from Delhi’s Tihar jail to Mumbai’s Jail in Arthur Road and Taloja jail after the Supreme Court order. They were caught for running the business from Tihar jail in connivance with corrupt jail administration. The apex court called Tihar jail officials “shameless” bypassing orders to keep the Chandra brothers in different jails in Mumbai.
ED had earlier informed the Supreme Court that the brothers were conducting business from the Tihar Jail premises in connivance with the prison staff when they were lodged there. It had made a startling revelation that its officials unearthed a “secret underground office” in the jail which was being operated by erstwhile Unitech founder Ramesh Chandra and visited by his sons Sanjay and Ajay when on parole or bail.
The ED, which has been investigating money laundering charges against the Chandras and their realty firm Unitech Ltd, said in its report that both Sanjay and Ajay have rendered the entire judicial custody meaningless as they have been freely communicating, instructing their officials, and disposing of properties from inside the Tihar Jail in connivance with the prison staff. The brothers have been in jail since August 2017 and are accused of siphoning home buyers’ money. A criminal case was registered by Delhi Police after around 200 homebuyers complained in 2015 for cheating them in two projects of Unitech real estate – ‘Wild Flower Country and Anthea Project’ – in Gurugram.
The ED filed a criminal case under various sections of the PMLA (Prevention of Money Laundering Act) early this year against the Unitech group and its promoters over allegations that the Chandra brothers illegally diverted over Rs.2,000 crore of depositors funds to Cyprus and the Cayman Islands. In October, the ED had arrested Unitech founder Ramesh Chandra, Sanjay Chandra’s wife Preeti Chandra, and Rajesh Malik of the Carnoustie group. ED has attached properties worth more than Rs.690 crore in this case till now. Preeti Chandra who settled in Dubai was arrested when landed in Delhi.
Unitech floated in the early 80s by Ramesh Chandra was India’s second-largest real estate company with 100s of projects across the country. Unitech group started falling in 2011 after Sanjay Chandra was caught in the 2G scam by floating a telecom company – Uninor – with a Norwegian partnership.
 Enforcement Directorate arrests Unitech founder Ramesh Chandra, daughter-in-law Preeti Chandra – Oct 04, 2021, PGurus.com
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