By Special Correspondent
New Delhi; The Enforcement Directorate (ED) has carried out searches at least at twenty locations of the Tablighi Jamaat (TJ) in the country, to probe the alleged money laundering activity done by the Muslim religious organization.
In the absence of any statement issued by the Tabligi Jamat office, on the reported ED raids, this news shines like a camphor in the media message and government’s narrative of TJ being a con-organization masquerading as a spiritual preacher holds true.
Earlier, the hundred years old Muslim organization, Tablighi Jamaat was mired in controversy for alleged spreader of Coronavirus after it organized a religious congregation in mid-March at its Markaz in Delhi.
Even though several courts have exonerated the Tablighi Jamaat from the charges of the spreader of the novel virus, the government of the day seems convinced that this Islamic organization is into money laundering activities.
It is with this purpose, the ED officials have carried out raids at 20 locations linked with Tablighi Jamaat, including seven in Delhi, five in Mumbai, four in Hyderabad, and three in Kerala.
The purpose of the ED raids is to investigate the ‘illegal funds’ being received by Tablighi Jamaat Chief Maulana Saad to organize Tablighi congregations at its Markaz in Delhi and to carry out other ‘activities.’
The ED sleuths have raided the Zakir Nagar residence Maulana Saad in Delhi and his bank account details and other financial transactions are being probed by the government agency.
ED has also conducted searches at the residential premises of the people who are associated with the Tablighi Jamaat chief. This includes the house of a person in Mumbai’s Andheri and SV Road area. The names of the individuals or any further information are not being divulged by the ED officials, sources reportedly close to ED have said.
The sources have also reported that ED had carried out searches at a money changer center in front of the Markaz building in Nizamuddin, Delhi. The ED has sought details from the money changer, as to know how much amount was exchanged in the last six years at the center, the sources said.
It may be recalled ED had registered the Enforcement Case Information Report (ECIR) against Maluna Saad under the Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA) on March 31 based on the FIR registered by Delhi Police.
Further in April, the ED had lodged a case against Maulana Saad on charges of culpable homicide and violation of the lockdown rules amid the pandemic outbreak. This was also done after Delhi Police filed an FIR against the Maulana.
It seems the government of the day is still not convinced of the purity of the purpose of the Tablighi Jamaat. They still smell rat in TJ activities and like to unravel some big money laundering trail in the Muslim religious activities. It is on such pretext may like to ban the organization, as it suits to placate the electoral constituency ‘JSR’ members.
One may recall, the ED had carried out a similar kind of raid at the premises of P. Chidambram in October 2019, with a media blitzkrieg miring him in corruption activities. However, after keeping the former union minister for 106 days in jail, the ED could not file a single case against him.