Chinese entities raided for suspected money laundering and hawala operations

Raided Chinese entities were found to be operating through shell entities.
Income tax office is conducting a probe into the conduct of some Chinese individuals.(Pradeep Gaur/ Mint)
Income tax office is conducting a probe into the conduct of some Chinese individuals.(Pradeep Gaur/ Mint)
Updated on Aug 11, 2020 10:27 PM IST
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Hindustan Times, New Delhi | | Edited by Abhinav Sahay

Income tax sleuths conducted raids on few Chinese individuals and their Indian associates on Tuesday based on information of their likely involvement in money laundering and hawala transactions through a series of shell entities. The raids were conducted at various premises of these Chinese entities, their close confederates and a couple of bank employees, according to an IT department statement.

“Search action revealed that at the behest of Chinese individuals, more than 40 bank accounts were created in various dummy entities, entering into credits of more than Rs 1000 crore over the period,” the statement attributed to Surabhi Ahluwalia, Commissioner of Income Tax (Media & Technical Policy) and the official spokesperson of Central Board of Direct Taxes (CBDT) said.

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It added that a subsidiary of Chinese company and its related concerns were found to have taken over Rs 100 crore in bogus advances from shell entities for opening businesses of retail showrooms in India.

According to the preliminary information on the raids, evidence of foreign hawala transactions involving Hongkong and US dollars have also been unearthed and further investigations were under progress.

“Further, incriminating documents in respect of hawala transactions and laundering of money with active involvement of bank employees and chartered accountants has been found as a result of search action,” the statement added.

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India has already banned several Chinese mobile apps in the country for national and data security reasons after mounting global concerns over Chinese government allegedly using these digital platforms for espionage and data harvesting.

Government has also taken some policy initiatives including blocking participation of Chinese firms from certain projects and government contracts in the aftermath of Galwan valley clashes between the soldiers of the two countries dealing a blow to bilateral relations and creating a popular atmosphere of mistrust of China in the country.

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