The Income Tax Department carried out searches in the first week of November, 2019 on a group of persons indulging in issuing bogus bills and carrying on hawala transactions. The search operations covered 42 premises across Delhi, Mumbai, Hyderabad, Erode, Pune, Agra & Goa.
The search operations resulted in busting of a major racket of cash generation by leading corporate houses in the infrastructure sector through bogus contracts/bills. Funds meant for public infrastructure projects were siphoned off through entry operators, lobbyists and hawala dealers. The companies involved in siphoning off funds are mostly located in NCR and Mumbai. One such company was earlier searched by the Income Tax Department in April 2019.
The projects involved in bogus billings are a major infrastructure and EWS projects located in Southern India. Evidence of cash payment of more than Rs. 150 crore to a prominent person in Andhra Pradesh has also been unearthed during the search.
The search action was successful in unearthing incriminating evidence and establishing the nexus between big corporates, hawala operators and identification of the entire chain of delivery, as well as siphoning of funds by way of bogus contracts to the tune of Rs. 3300 crore. Unexplained cash of Rs 4.19 crore and jewellery in excess of Rs 3.2 crore was also seized during the search operation.