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Rs 15 cr was taken out of Sushant's bank account

Rs 15 cr was taken out of Sushant's bank account

The Enforcement Directorate (ED) has confirmed that around Rs 15 crore was withdrawn from one of the bank accounts of late actor Sushant Singh Rajput, but it has so far not found any transaction from that account to his girlfriend Rhea Chakraborty.

The identities of the recipients of the tranches amounting to Rs 15 crore are being ascertained.

Rajput’s family has alleged that Rs 15 crore was siphoned off in tranches from a bank account of the actor that had around Rs 17 crore to accounts he had no connection with in a year. The agency registered a money laundering case on July 31 against Chakraborty and her relatives on the basis of an FIR on abetment to suicide and criminal conspiracy filed in Patna by Rajput’s father, Krishna Kishore Singh, six days earlier.

A scrutiny of all transactions through netbanking and debit cards from Rajput’s several bank accounts is yet to be completed. A source from the agency said mapping these withdrawals will help throw light on where his money went and for what purposes. “We are looking into who was using the debit cards and the netbanking facility to ascertain if someone else who had access to the PINs or the passwords could have performed those transactions.”

The investigation has found that up to Rs 2.78 crore went towards payment of taxes, including goods and services tax. The ED is also verifying a claim by an acquaintance of Rajput that the actor was generous and often willing to pay for the needs of those close to him.

Another source said since Rajput and Chakraborty were dating, some small financial transactions between them through other accounts are to be expected. “But as per the findings so far, no money was sent to her from the account from which Rs 15 crore was withdrawn.”

The agency is probing the circumstances under which Rajput, Chakraborty and her brother Showik came together for business activities. Rajput had set up two companies—Front India for World Foundation and Vividrage Rhealityx Pvt Ltd—of which Chakraborty and Showik are directors.

On Thursday, the agency questioned Jayanti Saha, a celebrity talent manager who had handled Rajput’s account in the past, about transactions between her agency and the actor since 2019. It will soon be recording the statements of Rajput’s bodyguard, a cook and a domestic help.

Chakraborty’s lawyer, Satish Maneshinde, rebutted all allegations against her. “She has been examined in probes by two investigating agencies so far, including the Mumbai police, and nothing against her has come out, nor has anyone said anything against her. In any financial transaction, there is an electronic trail that can be examined.”

He pointed out that the Maharashtra government, in its recent affidavit to the Supreme Court on the actress’ plea seeking transfer of the Patna FIR to Mumbai, said that Rajput’s relatives did not raise suspicions against anyone when the Mumbai police recorded their statements soon after the actor’s suicide on June 14. Rajput’s father, in his counter affidavit, said he approached the Patna police after he felt that the Mumbai police were “derailing the inquiry”.

On Thursday, the Maharashtra government told the court that registration of the Patna FIR was politically motivated. “Newspaper reports… state that the Bihar police were hesitating to register the FIR, but the chief minister of Bihar and another minister persuaded them to register it,” it said.

The allegation came hours after the Bihar government told the court that neither did the Maharashtra police register an FIR on Rajput’s suicide, nor did they extend support to the Patna police “on account of political pressure”.

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Tags: Sushant Singh Rajput Rhea Chakraborty Enforcement Directorate