I-T attaches Ratul Puri’s posh Delhi bungalow, FDI funds of father under anti-benami law
The assets, including an FDI amount of USD 40 million, have been provisionally attached under the anti-benami law and is related to the case against Ratul Puri and Deepak Puri, they said.Updated: Aug 12, 2019, 00:39 IST
The income tax (I-T) department has attached $40 million foreign direct investment (FDI) and a R300-crore worth bungalow in upscale Lutyens’ Delhi of Ratul Puri — the nephew of Madhya Pradesh chief minister Kamal Nath — and his father Deepak Puri under benami property transactions law, government officials said.
According to officials, the bungalow is located at APJ Abdul Kalam Road, which was purchased using foreign investment through a shell company.
I-T officials declined to provide specific details of the attachments, but said they have taken the action based on credible information.
“The company is unaware of any such development and hence incorrect to comment on it. Hindustan Power and its promoter have conducted the business in accordance to highest standards of corporate governance,” a spokesperson who represents Ratul Puri said.
A Delhi court had last week issued a non-bailable arrest warrant against Ratul Puri in connection with an Enforcement Directorate (ED) probe of alleged bribery in the R3,600 crore AgustaWestland helicopter deal.
Ratul Puri’s counsel denies Puri’s role in the case.
The Puris have been under the scanner of agencies such as I-T department and the Enforcement Directorate on charges of tax evasion and money laundering.
This is the second major attachment of Puri’s properties in about a fortnight. Last month, the department attached equity shares worth R254 crore related to companies promoted by Ratul Puri after it discovered that the transaction was allegedly made through shell companies involving a suspect in the Agusta case, officials said on the condition of anonymity.
The action was also initiated under the Prohibition of Benami Property Transactions (prohibition) Act because the R254-crore investment was apparently generated through over-invoicing of imports of solar panels by one of the group companies of Puri and the transactions took place through overseas shell companies, the officials said.
The agencies had conducted raids on Puri’s companies in April this year and found several evidences of tax evasion worth R1,350 crore. The ED is investigating Puri’s involvement in money laundering, the officials said.