ED grills Kingfisher Airlines official for second day

Mumbai: The Enforcement Directorate (ED) on Saturday continued grilling the now defunct Kingfisher Airlines' former CFO A. Raghunathan in the ongoing probe into a money-laundering case and defaulting loans of around Rs.900 crore from the state-run IDBI bank. While he was quizzed for over eight hours on Friday, he was interrogated for over seven hours by the ED sleuths on Saturday, though details were not available. Last Thursday, the ED had served summons on top officials of both the airlines and IDBI under the Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA) to probe allegations of siphoning of funds to tax havens, and suspected kickbacks. It followed up on Friday by issuing summons to Kingfisher chief and liquor baron Vijay Mallya seeking his presence before it on March 18 in connection with the same cases. Mallya is currently abroad since March 2 and likely to return by the month-end, according to his legal team. The cases were filed after the Central Bureau of Investigation registered cases against Mallya and others for money-laundering and other irregularities involving public funds. The action by ED and various public sector banks followed certain stern observations made by Central Bureau of Investigation Director Anil Kumar Sinha at a banking conclave in Mumbai earlier this month.