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Thursday, Nov 21, 2019

Raids find tax fraud of Rs 1K-crore by e-governance service provider Alankit group

According to the company’s website, Alankit has collaborated with the State Bank of India and the Bank of Baroda to enable people to access a range of banking facilities through internet-enabled kiosk outlets of the two banks.

india Updated: Oct 24, 2019 06:26 IST
Rajeev Jayaswal
Rajeev Jayaswal
Hindustan Times, New Delhi
The Income Tax (I-T) Department has unearthed tax evasion of over Rs 1,000 crore also involving hawala transactions and money laundering allegedly by Delhi-based Alankit Group.
The Income Tax (I-T) Department has unearthed tax evasion of over Rs 1,000 crore also involving hawala transactions and money laundering allegedly by Delhi-based Alankit Group.(File photo: Bloomberg)
         

The Income Tax (I-T) Department has unearthed tax evasion of over Rs 1,000 crore also involving hawala transactions and money laundering allegedly by Delhi-based Alankit Group, an e-Governance service provider to various private companies and government institutions, including the Unique Identification Authority of India and the tax department, officials with direct knowledge of the matter said requesting anonymity.

“The Income Tax Department conducted search operation on a group based in Delhi in connection with tax evasion and money laundering. The group is engaged in various e-governance projects and financial services. It has presence across several cities in India and also in Dubai,” the Central Board of Direct Taxes (CBDT) said in a statement on Wednesday. While the statement did not disclose the name of the firm, two tax officials quoted above confirmed the company is Alankit Group. They said that the group is also one of the vendors of the government in providing several back-end services to the income-tax department.

“The search and seizure action has led to the unearthing of several incriminating evidence establishing large scale tax evasion, hawala transaction and money laundering by the said taxpayer group. The group has taken recourse to use of shell companies based in Delhi/Kolkata to route unaccounted money,” the CBDT statement said. Preliminary inquiries estimated the quantum of accommodation entries and hawala transactions to be over ~1,000 crore, it said. “Earlier, the Department had conducted search action on entities related to fertilizer procurement. Investigations had revealed that a huge amount of commission was being collected in Dubai through shell companies of a Dubai based operator who is also an accused in a VVIP Chopper scam. A part of such commission was laundered back to India through the aforesaid Delhi based group,” it said.

One of the promoters of the group and the managing director of Alankit Ltd, Ankit Agarwal declined comments. Shalini Gupta of Concept PR, the firm’s external public relations agency, said: “The company’s legal team is working on the matter and it will issue an official statement tomorrow [Thursday].”

According to the company’s website, Alankit has collaborated with the State Bank of India and the Bank of Baroda to enable people to access a range of banking facilities through internet-enabled kiosk outlets of the two banks.

The website says that the company also provides services related to the permanent account number (PAN). “Alankit receives PAN applications on behalf of NSDL through its country-wide chain of TIN-Facilitation (TIN-FCs) and PAN centers. PAN applications can also be made through Alankit’s online facility,” the website says.