Call detail records of prominent people, including businessmen, and confidential reports of the Financial Intelligence Unit (FIU) of the Ministry of Finance have been found during searches at the residence of arrested journalist Upendra Rai, CBI sources said Monday. More FIRs are likely against the journalist who is already facing charges of extortion and criminal conspiracy, the sources said.
Rai was arrested last Thursday by the CBI for alleged dubious transactions running into crores through his bank accounts and for holding an airport security pass that he was not authorised to possess. The CBI had conducted searches at four locations across Delhi, Noida, Mumbai and Lucknow. It claimed to have found “sensitive documents related to the Income Tax department” from Rai’s residence.
“Among the documents are call detail records of prominent people that he was not supposed to have. FIU reports on dubious transactions of various companies were also found. These are confidential. Their recovery can attract charges under the Official Secrets Act and the I-T Act,” a CBI official said.
The agency, the official said, is also looking at real estate transactions that Rai allegedly mediated on behalf of a leading company which was at the centre of a court-monitored probe.
The CBI has registered two FIRs against Rai. In one FIR, he has been booked for extortion and criminal conspiracy for allegedly accepting money from a real estate company in Mumbai after promising to bail it out of its tax troubles. Unknown officials of the Mumbai I-T office have been named as accused in the FIR.
In the second FIR, the CBI has alleged that in 2017-18 alone, Rai’s bank accounts saw transactions of over Rs 100 crore. Some of these transactions, the CBI has claimed, indicate “pumping of tainted/ill-gotten money into the system”.