Income tax wing of the eastern region conducted surprise raids on three industrial and business groups operating in the Asansol-Durgapur industrial hub and its adjoining areas of Bankura district. The Investigation Wing officials of the Income Tax department started the raid operation on the night of 6 February (Thursday) and continued till Friday.
The raids under the supervision of Mr. Neeraj Singh, the Director (Investigation, eastern region of the Income Tax department) were done in different Asansol and Durgapur locations to ascertain the root of financial anomalies and the ‘hidden’ purpose behind the illegal fund transfer to several accounts.
Senior IT officials involved in the raid revealed that they have made significant seizure of documents suggesting gross anomaly relating to movement of fund from the respective company exchequers and illegal payments made to different agencies purposely to hide their actual volume of income.
The industrial and business groups on which the Income tax investigation wing cracked down are Sarojini Engineering Works Group, Prithvi Group and Sharma Group.
Sarojini Group owned by Mr. R Rajanbabu of Vishakhapattanam runs secondary steel units in Asansol Durgapur industrial zone and Prithvi Group, owned by Rajesh Jha, besides running daily passenger travel fleets to Kolkata is accused of trafficking of illegal coal from different illegal pits in Bankura.
Sharma Group owned by Shankar Sharma, Ramavtar Sharma and Kanhaiyalal Sharma runs Neelkanth Ferro Alloys, a secondary steel unit in Bankura and one refueling station in Asansol. The group earlier was accused of adulteration of petroleum fuel.
The Sarojini Group, according to the officials, had siphoned off Rs 60 crore cash in favour of one consultancy agency purposely as a tricky attempt to convert black money to white share capital. Mr Abhishek Kumar, Assistant Commissioner, IT (Investigation Wing) said: “The raids would continue. Besides we are trying to ascertain the actual magnitude of black money in the possession of such groups.”
The officials said: “Cash worth Rs 1 crore and gold-bars worth more than a crore of rupees have been seized so far after raiding 32 different locations belonging to the three companies.”