This is despite a Red Corner notice, on CBI’s request, pending against him.
New Delhi: Sanjay Kumar Choudhary, one of the co-accused and kingpins of the Rs 4,000 crore Madhu Koda coal scam, is flourishing in Dubai, United Arab Emirates (UAE), despite a Red Corner notice, issued in response to a request of the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI), pending against him.
Choudhary, who went into hiding following an I-T and ED raid on 31 October 2009, after his name surfaced in the scam, was arrested by the Dubai police on 9 November 2011, only to be released later.
Choudhary, who is from Jamshedpur, was the closest “advisor” of Madhu Koda, an independent MLA who became Chief Minister of Jharkhand from September 2006 to August 2008 with the support of Congress, RJD and other regional outfits.
During his almost 24-month tenure, Koda collected more Rs 4,000 crore as bribe in lieu of allocating coal mines using his discretionary power of Chief Minister, a large amount of which was shared with other parties for letting him remain in the CM chair, and a substantial portion of which was laundered and invested in Dubai by Choudhary.
Sources, who have been tracking Choudhary, said that he moved to Dubai on the directions of Koda as soon as he became the CM, as Koda did not want to risk “investing” in India as he was advised by his advisors that the properties that he would buy in India might get confiscated once he was out of power. Choudhary, as of today, is a citizen of UAE. His Indian passport was prepared on the recommendation of a Jharkhand cadre IPS officer, who then went on to become an integral part of a very popular and rich Indian sports body. Now this retired IPS officer, after trying his hand in politics, is heading another constitutional body in an eastern state.
The websites of the CBI and Interpol still carry the picture and details of Choudhary under the “wanted” section. The notice, issued in October 2011, states that he was born in Jamshedpur on 11 February 1968.
Dubai-based sources who are associated with Choudhary stated that he was now into “investing” and arranging finance for Indian nationals, including bureaucrats, who have a soft spot for Dubai and want to invest in the Gulf.
He also has business interests in the Ras al Khaimah region which has limestone and carbon mines.
He was recently seen in a private party of a well-known Bollywood star and his wife, that was arranged in Dubai. This actor, who comes from a family of film stars and politicians, had a run-in with the law himself for a considerable period in his life.
Choudhary, according to sources, is also arranging funds and acting as a mediator for the owner of an airline which is now grounded due to financial issues. The links between the money bags of Gulf and the owner of this airline is well documented and a matter of official record.
The CBI, till 2018, unsuccessfully tried to extradite Choudhary, but has now stopped putting in efforts after UAE courts have, for reasons best known to them but which are not justified when looked through a legal prism, have refused to accept the CBI’s request.
The CBI did not share its response to The Sunday Guardian’s query on the present status of Choudhary’s extradition. The Sunday Guardian reached out to Choudhary seeking his response, but he chose not to respond.