The Enforcement Directorate (ED) conducted raids late on Friday at four Zaveri Bazar establishment after intelligence inputs that black money was being used to buy precious metals.
ED officials said at least Rs69 crore to be used for such purchases was deposited in the bank accounts of south Mumbai’s bullion market traders. Sources said the ED had identified most of the recipients, but are still probing who made the deposits.
A preliminary probe revealed the money was transferred by the people in Mumbai and the transactions were done through shell companies . “The ED has frozen two bank accounts that contain Rs1.5 crore. The information is being studied to find where the rest of the cash is. Several teams are rummaging through real-time gross settlement system (RTGS) transactions to track the money and the people involved,” said a source privy to the investigation, not wishing to be named.
So far, no arrests have been made, sources said. that acted as a front for the dubious transfer of the money.
Officials are also trying to find out when the shell companies were floated and if money more than the revealed amount changed hands. The department confirmed the raids on their Twitter handle: “ED searches 4 bullion traders in Mumbai found Rs 69 crores deposits in cash using shell companies.”
The ED has registered a case under provisions of the Foreign Exchange Management Act (FEMA) and has not ruled out more raids.