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Second Enforcement Directorate Officer Arrested for Bribery in Less Than a Month

This development occurs as the Enforcement Directorate (ED), primarily focused on money-laundering investigations, is actively looking into numerous high-profile cases involving politicians, predominantly from the Opposition.

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New Delhi, Dec 03 (The Street Press India) – Another person from the Enforcement Directorate got arrested for taking bribes in just one month. This is making people wonder about how well this important investigative agency is working. Some people have been saying that the agency is doing things to help the Narendra Modi government and go after its critics and political opponents.

This is happening while the Enforcement Directorate, which usually looks into money-laundering, is busy looking into important cases involving politicians, especially those from the Opposition.

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On Friday, a senior Enforcement Directorate official named Ankit Tiwari was arrested in Madurai. He is accused of demanding and taking a bribe of Rs 20 lakh from a government employee, as reported by the directorate of vigilance and anti-corruption (DVAC), the anti-graft agency of the Tamil Nadu government. As of Saturday evening, the ED has not released any statement regarding the arrest.

On November 2, the Rajasthan anti-corruption bureau (ACB) arrested ED official Naval Kishore Meena and an alleged associate for allegedly accepting a bribe of Rs 15 lakh related to a chit fund scam. Following the arrest, the ED has suspended Meena. The Congress highlighted these arrests, using them to criticize the BJP, suggesting that one of the BJP’s prominent campaigners faced trouble, this time in Tamil Nadu.

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Tiwari, a 2016-batch IRS officer, was working in the Madurai ED office of the Union government. DVAC officials conducted raids on the Madurai ED office and Tiwari’s residence on Saturday, with central paramilitary forces guarding outside. In October, Tiwari allegedly informed a state government employee from Dindigul, Madurai, about a vigilance case against him, claiming instructions from the Prime Minister’s Office for an inquiry and asking the employee to appear before the ED office on October 30, as per a DVAC official.

Tiwari reportedly asked the man to pay Rs 3 crore to avoid legal action, eventually settling for Rs 51 lakh. On November 1, the government employee allegedly handed over Rs 20 lakh as the first installment. After lodging a complaint with the Dindigul district vigilance and anti-corruption unit on Thursday, DVAC sleuths arrested Tiwari the next day while he was receiving the sum. DVAC sources suggest that Tiwari, along with his ED team, had threatened multiple individuals and collected bribes, assuring closure of their cases.

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Tamil Nadu’s DMK government accuses the Modi government of using the ED and income-tax department to “harass” its officials and elected representatives ahead of the 2024 Lok Sabha elections. Earlier, the ED arrested state minister V. Senthil Balaji on June 14 on money-laundering charges from a 2014 case. In July, the agency questioned higher education minister K. Ponmudi and his son Gautham Sigamani, an MP, in a sand-mining case. The Rajasthan ACB received a complaint alleging that Meena, an ED officer in Manipur, demanded Rs 17 lakh to avoid property attachment and arrest in connection with a chit fund scam in Imphal.

ACB sleuths arrested Meena and his alleged accomplice, Babulal Meena, in Jaipur while they were reportedly accepting a bribe of Rs 15 lakh.

Notably, around 95% of the prominent politicians who have faced actions from the ED since the Modi government took office in 2014 belong to the Opposition. It’s worth mentioning that the ED operates under the Union finance ministry’s department of revenue.

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Sk Sahiluddin
Sk Sahiluddin
Sk Sahiluddin is a seasoned journalist and media professional with a passion for delivering accurate and impactful news coverage to a global audience. As the Editor of The Street Press India, he plays a pivotal role in shaping the editorial direction and ensuring the highest journalistic standards are upheld.
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