Amid probe in J&K Bank’s 2010 deal to buy Mumbai building, CBI raids certain locations

May 10, 2022 08:00 pm

In connection with Jammu and Kashmir Bank buying 65,000 sq ft office space in Mumbai in 2010 and the irregularities thereafter resulted in a case being registered against the bank on Nov 1, 2021. The Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) on Tuesday conducted searches at multiple locations in Mumbai, Delhi, Jammu and Srinagar.

The searches are being conducted in connection with a case registered on November 1, 2021 on allegations of irregularities in the purchase of Akruti Gold building for ₹180 crore by J&K Bank for its integrated office at Mumbai in 2010, a CBI statement said.

The Jammu and Kashmir government last year referred the case to CBI for a probe. In 2019, the anti-corruption bureau of Jammu & Kashmir registered multiple FIRs against the bank and its office bearers.

CBI had earlier conducted searches at various locations including in Mumbai, Hyderabad and Kolkata.

“The CBI sleuths conducted searches at the residences of Haseeb Drabu, then Chairman J&K Bank besides members of the Estates Committee of board of directors of the Bank including,” said official sources.

A CBI official said Tuesday’s raids were being conducted at premises of then members of Estate Committee of the Board of Directors including former chairman of J&K Bank Haseeb Drabu, then executive director AK Mehta, and then directors Mohammed lbrahim Shahdad and Vikrant Kuthiala.

Last month, the Enforcement Directorate (ED), which also initiated a money laundering probe on the basis of CBI’s first information report (FIR), questioned National Conference vice president and former Jammu and Kashmir chief minister Omar Abdullah.

Abdullah, who was at the ED office for about four hours, later told reporters that he was called for questioning in the 12-year-old case and “will further help them if they need me”. His party, however, questioned ED move as a “vicious vilification” of the former chief minister and a reflection that the central agency continued to be misused.