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Jharkhand Congress troubleshooter now in ED net: Who is Alamgir Alam?

As a sense of resentment and disquiet prevailed in the Congress earlier this year after the arrest of Hemant Soren, the job of defusing the situation fell to Alamgir Alam. With a section of the party’s legislators unhappy with ministerial berths in the Champai Soren-led government again going to Alam, Rameshwar Oraon, Banna Gupta, and Badal Patralekh, the party tasked Alam with ensuring the situation did not spiral out of control.

Given Alam’s importance in the party and the coalition government, his arrest by the Enforcement Directorate (ED) in a money-laundering case is a blow to the party. The four-time MLA and state Cabinet minister, who is also the Congress Legislature Party (CLP) leader, is the second person of the ruling Jharkhand Mukti Morcha (JMM)-Congress coalition to be arrested after Hemant on January 31.

The arrest came after the ED questioned Alam for two days and a week after the agency seized Rs 35 crore from the house of Jehangir Alam, a domestic worker at the home of Alamgir’s private secretary Sanjiv Lal. Both Lal and Jehangir were arrested last week.

Sources in the ED alleged that Lal used two vehicles registered in Jehangir Alam’s name and that he used to take care of the commission on behalf of some “influential persons” and played a role in managing tenders and collection of commission. A few days before the minister’s arrest, the ED told a Ranchi court that the names of “several officials from top to bottom of the Rural Development Department” had emerged during its investigation.

A Congress insider said Jehangir Alam was related to Alamgir and it was at his instance that Lal appointed him his house help. “Jehangir Alam, with whom the entire cash was found, runs a water purification plant in the

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