Enforcement Directorate (ED) raided properties belonging to former MLA R. Roshan Baig and Congress MLA B. Z. Zameer Ahmed Khan in connection with the ₹4,000 crore IMA scam, a ponzi scheme in which thousands of investors were allegedly cheated in the name of halal investment that went bust in June 2019. Raids began around 6 a.m. at multiple locations in Bengaluru on August 5.
While Mr. Baig has been chargesheeted in the case by the CBI, Mr. Khan was questioned by multiple agencies, including the ED, for a property transaction with IMA founder Mohammed Mansoor Khan, but he has not been charged by any agency till date.
ED, Bengaluru began the probe into the case in 2019. It was transferred to the head office in Delhi in 2020 due to the sensitive and high profile nature of the case, sources said. The agency had largely kept quiet for nearly a year-and-a-half until August 5.
A team of over 100 ED officials from New Delhi landed in Bengaluru for the search operations that are underway at six properties connected with Mr. Baig, including his two residences in Shivajinagar, and at the Chamarajpet residence of Mr. Khan apart from offices of National Travels, a firm he owns, and other properties linked to him, sources said.
Mr. Khan is known to have sold one of his properties on Serpentine Road, Richmond Town, which is spread over 14,924 sqft for ₹9.38 Crore to IMA founder Mohammed Mansoor Khan. The transaction was declared in his 2018 poll affidavit. He has consistently denied any other business links to the IMA. He was questioned by the SIT of Karnataka Police, CBI and ED in connection with the case.
Mr. Baig has been blamed by IMA founder Mohammed Mansoor Khan for his business going bust claiming he was allegedly forced to pay ₹400 crore to the former minister. He was arrested by the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) in November 2020 and is presently out on bail. CBI filed a chargesheet against him in April 2021 in which they claimed that investments of depositors in IMA were diverted to Mr. Baig, then a minister in the Siddaramaiah-led Congress government.
Congress suspended him from the party after the scam was exposed. Though he wanted to join the BJP, the party high command blocked his entry due to his tainted image.
The Competent Authority in IMA and other scams, Government of Karnataka on July 6 attached around 20 movable and immovable properties of Mr. Baig, estimated to be worth over ₹15 crore.