The multi-crore hawala racket which the investigation wing of income tax department busted during a search in Katni on March 21 this year reveals that people involved in such money transactions had network in Indore, Gwalior, Delhi, Ludhiana, Kolkata, Hyderabad, Kochi and other cities.
The main accused have been identified as Manish Saraogi, Naresh Poddar and Naresh Burman who held over 111 bank accounts through which they used to provide facility to convert black money into white money, an I-T department official said.
This unaccounted money which was illegally legitimised was passed on to different traders who are based in Katni and Jabalpur.
According to the income tax department, further investigations are likely to reveal names of influential people of Madhya Pradesh and other states who utilised this illegal service.
Within 10 days of the probe, the income tax department has re-opened over 100 cases across India. During the course of investigation, it has been revealed that a sum of Rs 50 crore was thus legitimised in 2008-2009 alone.
“From 2009 till current financial year, the matter is still under examination. It is expected that this racket facilitated conversion of over Rs 1,000 crore of black money into white money,” a senior department official said on condition of anonymity.
Many of the accounts are believed to be benami (fake) which were being operated in connivance with some private banks.
“These private banks have been flouting KYC and RBI (Reserve Bank of India) norms and government guidelines issued from time to time,” the official said. The department is likely to question bank managers who facilitated illegal transactions for last several years.
Madhya Pradesh and Chhattisgarh principal director (investigation) R K Paliwal guided the investigation conducted by Indore and Jabalpur teams headed joint director (investigation) Prashant Jha and deputy director Jagan Solanki.
Investigation wings from across the country also coordinated with MP team.
Meanwhile, cases of thousands of tax evaders are likely to be re-opened across the country with an aim to unearth unaccounted money.
Bhandari back on I-T radar
The investigation wing of income tax department Indore region has again taken up the matter of Vyapam scam accused Vinod Bhandari and others whose properties were attached by directorate of enforcement (ED) Indore office recently. ED took the steps on the basis of information revealed during an income tax survey.