I-T sleuths search premises linked to Bihar minister’s kin

Published on Nov 17, 2022 10:13 PM IST

In total, 35 locations across the country, including in Patna, Bhagalpur and Delhi, were searched today, I-T officials said.

Bihar minister’s residence in Patna, which the I-T sleuths visited on Thursday. (Santosh Kumar/HT Photo)
Bihar minister’s residence in Patna, which the I-T sleuths visited on Thursday. (Santosh Kumar/HT Photo)
By, Patna

Income tax (I-T) officials on Thursday searched premises of three business groups in Patna, Bhagalpur and Delhi for alleged tax evasion and also visited the house of Bihar’s industry minister Sameer Mahaseth , whose relative J N Gupta is associated with one of the business groups searched, I-T officials said.

In total, 35 locations across the country, including in Patna, Bhagalpur and Delhi, were searched today, they said.

An I-T official, not willing to be named, said searches were conducted at the premises of Heera Panna, having interest in jewellery and other business activities in Bihar’s capital Patna, Venus construction and Saakar group, both having interests in real estate in Patna and other places.

The official said searches were carried out at the premises of Sanjay Kumar Singh of Venus construction and Sudeep Kumar as well J N Gupta of Saakar group.

Gupta is said to be brother- in- law of industry minister Mahaseth.

“The raids were in connection with tax evasion by these firms. Digital transactions and other financial records of the firms are being scrutinised .Officials are expected to continue the searches till tomorrow,” said the official.

I-T sleuths also visited the industry minister’s residence at Boring road.

Mahaseth is an RJD MLA from Madhubani and has business interests.

Talking to PTI, the minister said, “Yes, I-T officials visited my house in Patna today as part of an investigation against a distant relative of mine. I have come to know that searches are being conducted at the premises of my relatives in Patna and other places.”

“Let me tell you one thing very clearly that neither the case is related to me nor my premises are being searched. They (I-T officials) simply visited my house and enquired about my relative,” he said.

“We are fully cooperating with them in their investigation. And we don’t indulge in any sort of tax evasion,” Mahaseth said.

Meanwhile, Bihar BJP spokesperson Arvind Kumar Singh alleged that almost all ministers of the Nitish Kumar government are involved in corrupt activities.”Those who have failed to pay tax will have to face action,” he said.

On the other hand, deputy chief minister and RJD leader Tejashwi Prasad Yadav said I-T raids were part of vendetta politics and accused the BJP-led NDA government at the Centre of using federal agencies to harass opposition leaders. “Such raids would continue till 2024 parliamentary polls. This is no surprise. Everybody is watching what is happening in Jharkhand,” Yadav said, referring to Jharkhand chief minister Hemant Soren’s questioning by the Enforcement Directorate on Thursday.

( with inputs from PTI)

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  • ABOUT THE AUTHOR

    A journalist for 21 years, Anirban covers RJD, legislature and government beats. Has extensive experience in covering elections and writes regularly on finance, land reforms, registration, excise and socio-economic issues.

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