Ranchi: Weeks after ducking summons in an alleged Rs2,000 crore illegal money transfer scam, former Jharkhand chief minister Madhu Koda was on Monday arrested by the vigilance bureau in a disproportionate assets case and sent to 14 days of judicial custody.
Tightening noose: Former Jharkhand chief minister Madhu Koda being taken away after he was arrested in Ranchi. PTI
Koda was arrested from his residence in Chaibasa in West Singhbhum district in Jharkhand. His former ministerial colleague Kamalesh Singh was arrested from Husseinabad in Palamu district.
Koda, 38, was given judicial custody by a special vigilance court. “We have reached a stage when his arrest was necessary. We had taken the arrest warrant from a competent court,” inspector general of police, vigilance, M.V. Rao said.
Singh, who was a minister in four state governments led by Shibu Soren, Arjun Munda and Koda between 2005 and 2008, was arrested after summons by the vigilance court were sent to Palamu superintendent of police Jatin Narwal.
Koda’s arrest followed his defiance of the bureau’s summons to present himself on 27 November in the disproportionate assets case.
He had evaded three summons by the enforcement directorate, one by the income-tax department and one by the vigilance bureau, saying he was busy campaigning for the Jharkhand assembly elections.
While the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) slammed the Union government for the “delayed” action, the Congress party and the Rashtriya Lok Dal said the law will take its own course.
The Congress on Monday also asked the BJP not to politicize the issue of Koda’s arrest to polarize votes in Jharkhand. “Do not play politics on the issue and make wild allegations... BJP is politicizing it. The matter should not be used to polarize voters in Jharkhand,” party spokesman Shakeel Ahmed told reporters in Ranchi.