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Former minister skips court

Ranchi Dec. 15: Former water resources minister Kamlesh Singh today failed to appear before the special Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA) court in the state capital after complaining of giddiness.

Singh, who has been lodged at Birsa Munda Central Jail after he was arrested on November 30 last year, has been admitted to the state-run Rajendra Institute of Medical Sciences (RIMS) in the city.

The former minister was supposed to be produced before the PMLA court in connection with a money laundering case slapped against him by the Enforcement Directorate (ED).

However, following his admission to RIMS, the court ordered that Singh be produced before it tomorrow.

A production warrant, issued today by the PMLA court of Gitendra Kumar Singh, has been sent to the jail authorities seeking compliance to produce Singh before it.

The state vigilance bureau has accused Singh of amassing assets disproportionate to his known sources of incomes. Chargesheets filed by the bureau against Singh on October 5 last year said that he had amassed Rs 1.63 crore of disproportionate assets during his three years as a minister against his total salary of Rs 15 lakh.

The case had been handed over to the CBI on orders of Jharkhand High Court on August 4 this year. The former minister has also been charged by the ED for laundering crores of rupees to secret destinations under the Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA).

Once Singh is produced before the court, it is likely that the ED would press for taking him on remand to facilitate interrogation into the money laundering scam.

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