The Enforcement Directorate, also known as ED, arrested Jet Airways India Limited founder Naresh Goyal late on Friday night in a money laundering case. He was summoned for questioning to the ED’s Mumbai office before the arrest.
He is accused of a scam involving 538 crores INR. Goyal will be presented in a special PMLA court on September 2nd. ED had earlier called him for questioning twice but he didn’t appear.
Last year in November, Canara Bank had lodged a complaint against Naresh Goyal, his wife Anita, and others for fraud. Following this complaint, the CBI filed a fraud case in May 2023, and later, the ED also registered a money laundering case.
Three Important Points
- Jet Airways had received 848.86 crores INR in credit limit and loans, of which 538.62 crores INR remained unpaid. This account was declared “fraud” on July 29, 2021.
- On May 5th, the CBI conducted searches at Naresh Goyal’s Mumbai office and seven other locations. Raids were also conducted at the residences of Naresh Goyal, Anita Goyal, and Jet Airways executive Gaurang Shetty.
- Based on the FIR filed by CBI, the ED registered a money laundering case on July 19th. They also conducted searches at the addresses of Goyal and his associates. Canara Bank alleged that Jet Airways transferred 1,410.41 crores INR to related companies for the purpose of siphoning off funds.
Goyal’s personal expenses, such as staff salaries, phone bills, and vehicle expenses, were all covered by Jet Airways. He founded Jet Airways in 1993 and stepped down as Chairman in 2019. Jet Airways was once one of India’s largest private airlines and held the status of the largest private airline in South Asian nations. However, due to financial debts, Jet Airways was grounded on April 17, 2019.
In June 2021, the Jalan-Kalrock consortium won the bid for Jet Airways under the National Company Law Tribunal (NCLT) bankruptcy resolution process. The process for Jet Airways’ revival has been ongoing since then, but the airline has not resumed operations yet.
This consortium comprises Murari Lal Jalan, a Dubai-based businessman, and Kalrock Capital Management Limited, a London-based global firm specializing in financial advisory and alternative asset management. Naresh Goyal, who started as a ticketing agent in the 1990s, transformed into an entrepreneur and founded Jet Airways, providing an alternative to Air India for travelers. At one point, Jet Airways had a fleet of 120 planes and was among the leading airlines.