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SIT examines documents of minister kin

The special investigation team (SIT), probing the theft in the Anandpuri flat of BJP MP Giriraj Singh and the subsequent recovery of Rs 1.14 crore and $600 in cash, has started scrutinising the documents furnished by his cousin Rakesh Kumar Singh, a Nagpur-based realtor.

Rakesh, having his roots in Barahiya of Lakhisarai district, told the SIT on Saturday that the recovered money belonged to him. He submitted documents related to sale of land in Nagpur to some Patna-based buyers.

According to the documents, Rakesh had sold property worth Rs 80 lakh in Nagpur and withdrawn Rs 35 lakh from a bank. Total Rs 1.2 crore was kept in the flat.

The thieves left behind Rs 1.27 lakh on the fateful day, which was later recovered.

A sum of Rs 4.68 lakh was still missing, Rakesh is learnt to have told the interrogators.

Rakesh informed the police that he was into poultry business in Nagpur. His two firms — Shri Jagdamba Poultry Private Ltd and Maa Gauri Private Ltd — supplied eggs and maize as poultry feed.

Patna superintendent of police (traffic) Rajiv Mishra, who is also holding the charge of senior superintendent of police (SSP) in the absence of Manu Maharaaj (on leave), said: “Notices are being served on the buyers of the property in Nagpur. The purpose is to verify the details submitted by the minister’s relative to substantiate his claim that the money belonged to him. He had told the police yesterday (Saturday) that he had kept the money for the expansion of his business.”

Giriraj was accompanied by Rakesh when he visited the Sri Krishna Puri police station on Saturday to get his statement recorded.

Sources said Giriraj told the police that initially he was not aware of the cousin’s money stuffed in his Shivam apartment flat.

However, his younger brother Jairam Singh knew it, a source quoted the Nawada MP as saying.

The source said the SIT had asked Giriraj to furnish details of his cousin’s property/business transactions and income tax returns as early as possible.

“Rakesh was present at the time the statement of the former minister was being recorded at the SK Puri police station on Saturday. He admitted that the money belonged to him,” Mishra, the acting SSP, said.

Mishra said the income tax officials were investigating the matter separately.

“It is up to the I-T officials to ascertain the source of income of the claimant,” he said, adding that the district police were concerned with the theft incident only.

The police have launched raids to arrest a Pirbahore resident, who was also involved in the theft.

Giriraj had initially told the police from New Delhi that the thieves had stolen Rs 50,000 in cash and jewellery from his flat on July 7.

Within 24 hours, Rs 1.14 crore and $600 in cash were found in suitcases recovered from an autorickshaw stopped at Pirbahore. One person, identified as Dinesh Kumar, was arrested on the spot.

Later, three others were arrested.