Ahead of West Bengal assembly elections, the Enforcement Directorate (ED) is currently conducting raids at 12 different locations across the state. Sources informed that ED is raiding the offices and residences of businessman Ganesh Bagadia as well as the residence of Singh brothers- Niraj and Amit - at Konnagar Kanaipur of Hoogly district with regards to alleged illegal trading and smuggling of coal. The sources further informed that Badadia and Niraj Singh are believed to be linked with Anup Maji alias Lal, who is allegedly the mastermind of the case and his close associate Binay Mishra.
The CBI on November 28, 2020, raided 45 places across four states, namely West Bengal, Jharkhand, Uttar Pradesh and Bihar, in connection with a case of illegal mining and theft of coal from public sector coal firm Eastern Coalfield Limited (ECL), which operates in Bengal and Jharkhand.
Asansol, Durgapur, Raniganj in Burdwan district and Bishnupur in the South 24 Parganas district were among the 25 locations raided in West Bengal. Cases have been launched against several people including officials of Eastern Coalfields Limited, Indian Railways and CISF in connection with illegal trade and theft of coal.
As per sources, the alleged kingpin of the entire coal smuggling scam is a West Bengal-based coal dealer. The offices and homes of Anup Majhi based in the Asansol area along with those of his aides were also searched by the authorities. The alleged kingpin of the coal scam runs an operation in open cast coal mines around the Jharkhand-Bengal border, as per sources, and has also been issued a notice by the I-T department.
During Union Home Minister Amit Shah's visit to Kolkata, he had questioned West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee's concern over the raids against coal dealer Anup Majhi. This came after Mamata Banerjee, at a press conference, highlighted that the raid by the central agencies had coincided with Amit Shah's visit.