Lakshman Seth was summmonned for a fraud case running into several crores.
Kolkata: The criminal investigation department (CID) summoned BJP leader Lakshman Seth for questioning in a case of fraud running into several crores. The former MP, who joined the BJP last year following his expulsion from the CPI(M) in 2014, has been asked to appear at the state detective agency’s headquarters at Bhawani Bhavan.
CID’s deputy inspector general of police (operations) Nishat Parvez said, “A notice under section 41A of the Criminal Procedure Code has been issued to Lakshman Seth to meet the investigating officer at CID headquarters on August 8 at 11 am for interrogation in connection with the Bhabanipur police station case under sections 420 (cheating), 409 (criminal breach of trust) and 120B (criminal conspiracy) of the Indian Penal Code.”
According to the CID, Industrial Infrastructure Upgradation Scheme (IIUS) was promoted in the year 2003 by the Department of Industrial Policy and promotions (DIPP), Ministry of Commerce and Industry in order to enhance the international competitiveness of the domestic industry by providing financial assistance for the creation of quality infrastructure through PPP model in the industry, which has the potential to become globally competitive.
The state detective agency said, “In each scheme, a special purpose vehicle (SPV) is required for implementation and according to the approval of the government, SPV was formed in this matter in the name of Haldia Integrated Development Agency Ltd. (HIDAL). Mr Seth, the then M.P and Chairman of Haldia Development Authority (HDA) was appointed as chairman of HIDAL. As per a detailed project report, (DPR) submitted by HAD, the said DIPP approved eight of the proposed project under IIUS, including R&D infrastructure for plastics and Central Tool & Testing Laboratory of Haldia industries cluster.”
It added, “Implementation of the HIDAL project called for expression of interest (EOI) through press advertisement. In response to one such advertisement, Indian Centre for Advancement of Research & Education (ICARE) submitted its interest, on the basis of which an agreement was executed between HIDAL & ICARE to implement both the projects. ICARE built up both projects within its private campus, that is, in the campus of the Haldia Institute of Technology. It was an institute of ICARE, which violated the rules and guidelines of IIUS. Therefore, a sanction of such projects was terminated by the apex committee of DIPP and HIDAL was directed to refund the amount giving on such project with penal interest.”
The CID elaborated, “The agreement was terminated by HIDAL on October 3, 2013 and a termination amount of Rs 10,35,25,066 had been demanded. ICARE has paid a total amount for Rs 3,75,00,000 in three instalments but the balance amount has not yet been paid. On the basis of the complaint submitted by CEO HIDAL Dr Kousik Brata Dey, the case was started against Mr Seth.”