As onion prices soared and the supply of the bulb in the market dwindled, Income Tax (IT) authorities conducted raids at warehouses of many traders in this union territory and various Punjab districts, an official said in Chandigarh on Friday.
The raids, held simultaneously at nearly 10 premises Thursday, continued late into the night and are aimed at checking hoarding.
"Raids were conducted at the godowns of two leading traders at the grain market in Sector 26, Chandigarh. We have also conducted raids at the offices, godowns and cold storages of leading commission agents and traders in Ludhiana, Amritsar and Jalandhar districts," said an official of Punjab's IT department here.
"These raids were conducted to check illegal hoarding of onions and other vegetables that has led to their price rise. Right now, we cannot comment on the findings of these raids as our investigation is still under process. We have confiscated various documents, transaction slips and record books," he added.
India has so far received around 50 truck-loads of onions every day from Pakistan through the Attari-Wagah border check-post from Dec 21 to Jan 5.
According to a communication received from Pakistan's commerce ministry, onions will now not be transhipped to India through both land and rail routes.
With onion prices touching Rs.100 a kg in some parts of the country last month, Indian traders started buying the bulb from Pakistan at Rs.300-350 a quintal.
Most of the onions coming to India are from Pakistan's Sindh province. Pakistan has said it is facing a shortage of onions now.