Batcha could have led CBI to 2G money trail
The death of Sajid Batcha, a key aide of former telecom minister Andimuthu Raja, came just as the second round of investigations into the 2G Spectrum scam was all set to focus on the Dawood Ibrahim link and hawala transactions.
The CBI, coupled with its evidence and inputs from the Intelligence Bureau, had managed to link some of the transactions to hawala operators who were part of the Dawood gang headquartered in Pakistan.
The CBI's investigation shows that Batcha, who hails originally from Perambalur (Raja's home town), had floated a company in Singapore in the year. This company, which came into existence in 2007, was an arm of his Greenhouse company.
It is said that this arm was set up at a paltry Rs 3 lakh and in the next two to three years it grew into a Rs 600 crore company.
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Image: (Inset) Sadiq Batcha
He had played the lead role in channelising the hawala money
The CBI had managed to establish all the money that came to Raja as part of the 2G scam was channelised into the Singapore-based company through a well laid out hawala network.
It was further established that Batcha, who himself was well versed with the hawala network, had played the lead role in channelising the money.
However, the more important aspect is that every hawala network in the country is controlled by the Dawood gang and the CBI was trying to find as to what extent it had played a part in channelising money that emerged out of the 2G scam.
Image: Andimuthu Raja
Dawood gang helped Batcha?
The CBI wanted the names of four very crucial persons who helped Batcha route the money between India and Singapore. These men are alleged to be operatives of the Dawood gang and this was something that even Batcha wanted to avoid coming out in the open.
Sources say the CBI wanted to grill Batcha further on this on Wednesday. Besides, the investigators also suspected that a close circle of Raja and other top political leaders were aware of the manner in which the funds were being routed.
It would have been a major embarrassment for all those involved in this to have their names associated with members of the D gang and hence the panic button was pressed, sources say.
The hawala angle to the 2G scam has been doing the rounds for quite some time now. The interrogation of Paramesh Kumar, Raja's nephew, revealed that there were large money transfers through export orders.
How hawala operation was carried out
Further, investigators were also looking at the manner in which the money could have been transferred through hawala operators.
The last round of investigations looked into the possibility of money being transferred through vegetable vendors and textile exporters.
The Intelligence Bureau points out that vegetable vendors, exporters, courier services and other such small time unassuming businesses are usually set up to transfer money through hawala transactions.
The IB also states that the Dawood gang specialises on this front and that the three major businesses after a drop in arms smuggling for this gang were drugs, hawala and fake currency.