Karnataka Food and Civil Supplies Minister BZ Zameer Ahmed Khan has been summoned by the central probe agency Enforcement Directorate in connection with the IMA ponzi scheme scandal. The minister has been asked to appear before the investigators before on or before July 5.
Zameer, in his 2018 Assembly elections affidavit, had listed purchasing a property worth Rs 5 crore from the tainted and currently absconding IMA Managing Director Mansoor Khan. The IMA scandal is now pegged to be worth hundreds of crores and more than 40,000 investors have been defrauded.
According to reports, the minister's family initially was reluctant to accept the summons notice from the ED officials when the investigators visited the ministerâ€™s residence on Friday afternoon. Later, however, they accepted the notice on the insistence of the minister himself.
Speaking to reporters, Zameer said, â€śWhatâ€™s wrong in the notice (regarding the purchase deal)? I just have to clarify to the officials. I have all the documents and will submit them to the ED... I will fully cooperate in the investigation and will be happy if the aggrieved investors get their money back.â€ť
The minister further said that the property purchase was the only transaction he had involving Mansoor Khan and he would not mind if a CBI probe was conducted into the scam.
â€śIâ€™ll appear before the ED and answer the officersâ€™ questions. If the case is transferred to the CBI, I will be the happiest person. My only prayer is that the investors â€” the poor people, in particular â€” get their investment back,â€ť the minister told reporters.
So far, the central agency has attached Rs 197 crore in properties and another Rs 12 crore from 52 bank accounts of the tainted company.
According to the Enforcement Directorate, IMA was running a ponzi scheme and was not running any business. The central agency said that in the coming days, a red-corner notice will be issued against Mansoor Khan, who is believed to be hiding in the UAE.