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ED summons former minister Praful Patel in aviation deal case


New Delhi, June 01: The Enforcement Directorate has summoned senior NCP leader and former aviation minister Praful Patel next week as part of its money laundering probe related to alleged losses suffered by national carrier Air India in a multi-crore aviation scam during the UPA-era, officials said Saturday.

They said Patel, a Member of Rajya Sabha, has been asked to appear before the investigating officer of the case on June 6 here.

File photo of Praful Patel

This is the first major action against a political leader in the alleged multi-crore aviation scam that is stated to have taken place during the UPA government led by Manmohan Singh.

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Official sources said Patel needs to be put through certain revelations made by arrested aviation lobbyist Deepak Talwar and certain evidence unearthed by the agency in pursuit of this case filed under the Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA). The agency had recently filed a charge sheet in the case naming Deepak Talwar. It has said that Talwar was in regular touch with Patel.

Assuring cooperation to the probe agency, Patel said, "I will be happy to cooperate with the Enforcement Directorate to help them understand the complexities of aviation sector."

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