Dhiraj Sahu I-T raids: Cash counting continues on 5th day

Bhubaneswar, Dec 10 (IANS): The counting of cash seized from a distillery unit, allegedly linked to Congress MP Dhiraj Prasad Sahu located at Sudpada in Odisha's Balangir district continued on the fifth day even as several counting machines broke down due to the heavy workload, said sources on Sunday.

Some mechanics were reportedly present at the bank to immediately repair the counting machines.

Officials of SBI informed the media persons that counting of notes has ended in Sambalpur and Titilagarh branches. The official sources said that Rs 11 crore has been seized from Titilagarh while the amount seized in Sambalpur stood at Rs 37.50 crore.

Sources claimed that around 60 staffers and several machines have been engaged at the SBI branch at Balangir for the counting of the cash brought to the branch in 176 bags.

The officials reportedly finished counting cash stashed in 102 bags amounting to around Rs 140 crore till Saturday night.

Meanwhile, unconfirmed sources claimed that the counting of cash kept in another 40 odd bags has been completed till Sunday afternoon increasing the seizure amount to around Rs 180 crore. The counting is expected to be finished by Sunday evening.

On the other hand, a team of Income Tax officials from Hyderabad has reached Balangir to assist in the investigation.

Notably, the Income Tax officials launched simultaneous raids at different places related to Boudh Distillery Private Limited, an Odisha-based distillery firm, and other liquor businessmen linked to the firm in Balangir, Sambalpur, Sundargarh, Bhubaneswar in Odisha, Kolkata in West Bengal and Bokaro in Jharkhand on Wednesday.

The sleuths stumbled upon huge cash stashed in two almirahs at the Sudpada distillery unit in Bolangir district. The officials later took the cash in 156 bags to a nearby branch of State Bank of India (SBI) for counting. Sources stated that the cash recovered from the distillery firm was estimated to be over Rs 200 crore.

Later, the I-T officials also recovered more cash during searches at the house of the manager, Bunty Sahu at Sudpada distillery unit on Friday.



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