New Delhi [India], January 27 (ANI): The Directorate of Enforcement (ED) has attached 32 properties, both movable and immovable, in Maharashtra and Karnataka totalling Rs 70 crore, under the provisions of the Prevention of Money Laundering, 2002 (PMLA).
The attachment of assets was related to a case of fraudulent issuance of TDS refund of about Rs 263 crore from the Income Tax Department by Senior Tax Assistant Tanaji Mandal Adhikari and others, the ED said on Friday.
The attached assets include land, flats, and luxury cars held in the name of Bhushan Anant Patil, Rajesh Shetty, Sarika Shetty, Kriti Verma, and others.
"Earlier freezing orders under PMLA in respect of 33 bank accounts of various entities having balance of Rs. 96.24 and seized cash of Rs. 2.85 lakhs was also issued in the matter," the agency said in a statement.
The ED launched an investigation under the PMLA on an FIR registered by CBI AC-I, Delhi on the basis of a written complaint by the additional director general (Vigilance)-4 CBDT about bogus issuance of refunds for assessment years 2007-08 and 2008-09.
"Tanaji Mandal Adhikari, while working as a Sr. Tax Assistant, had access to RSA Tokens and login credentials of his supervisory authorities. He orchestrated the fraud in connivance with others, fraudulently generating TDS refunds total exceeding Rs 263 crore and transferred it in various bank accounts, including that of M/s SB Enterprises, a proprietary concern to Bhushan Anant Patil. The CBI has filed charge sheet against Tanaji Mandal Adhikari, Bhushan Anant Patil, Rajesh Shantaram Shetty and others," the ED said.
The probe under PMLA revealed that during the period between November 2019 and November 2020, a total of 12 fraudulent TDS refunds were generated by Tanaji Mandal Adhikari, amounting to Rs 263.95 crore which was fraudulently credited to the account of M/s SB Enterprises, a proprietary concern of Bhushan Anant Patil.
"These Proceeds of Crime (PoC) were subsequently transferred into the bank accounts of Bhushan Anant Patil and other related persons and entities and also in Shell companies. During the course of an investigation under PMLA, it is revealed that one Kriti Verma had sold one such property in Gurugram, Haryana, which was acquired in 2021 out of POC of Rs 1.02 crore and received sale proceeds in her bank accounts," the central agency informed further.
In the ensuing search operations, the entire sale proceeds amounting to Rs 1.18 crore were identified in her bank accounts and frozen, the ED stated.
The probe further revealed that immovable properties in the form of land at Lonavala, Khandala, Karjat, Pune and Udupi, flats at Panvel and Mumbai areas, and movable assets in the form of three luxury cars BMW X7, Mercedes GLS400d and Audi Q7 had been acquired out of the proceeds of crime in their names and in the names of other related persons, the agency said.
On the identification of these assets, Provisional Attachment Order under PMLA was issued attaching 32 assets, as is mentioned in the report. (ANI)