Officials of the Income-Tax department raided 17 premises of SKIL Infrastructure Limited in Mumbai and New Delhi on Wednesday.
SKIL is the promoter company of the Defence and Offshore Engineering Company Limited —formerly known as Pipavav Shipyard Limited—which is the country’s largest and the first corporate shipyard to build warships and other vessels for the Indian Navy.
A recent expenditure of Rs 80 crore on filling land and creating infrastructure on it brought the company under the scanner.
“The company showed Rs 67 crore as expenditure on filling land and R13 crore on creating infrastructure on it,” an IT official said. Officials suspect the figures could have been inflated to evade tax. Director-general of I-T (Investigation) BP Gaur confirmed the searches, but refused to comment.
A SKIL spokesperson said: “The management is cooperating with the officers.” During the searches, officials recovered Rs 24 lakh in cash from the Malad office of one of the company associates. Part of the cash was stashed in a wall cavity covered by a mirror. “We suspect the cash could be unaccounted for,” said an official.
The authorities are also checking the loans taken by the company and investments by outsiders in it. Twelve lockers and jewellery were found at company chairman Nikhil Gandhi’s home. Gandhi is in New Delhi and his wife is in Dubai. Gandhi will return on Thursday.