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ED unearths gold smuggling racket, seizes gold bars, jewellery worth crores

ANI | Updated: Feb 17, 2020 21:01 IST

New Delhi [India], Feb 17 (ANI): The Enforcement Directorate on Monday seized gold bars, jewellery, silver, foreign currency and unaccounted Indian currency worth Rs 3.75 crore from Jaipur, Kolkata and Chennai in a coordinated operation.
The gold weighed 26.97 kg and silver 12.22 kg.
An ED official said, "We had received reliable input that M/s Maharaja Jewellers, M/s Bhagwati Jewellers, Ladiwala Associates of Jaipur are purchasing smuggled gold bars from Harsh Bothra of Chennai and M/s Banka Bullions Pvt Ltd."
"Based on this input, we found that several individuals were involved in smuggling of gold bars and these gold bars were destined for Jaipur. These gold bars, coming to Jaipur via Kolkata, have the highest purity," the official added.
The modus operandi adopted by the suspects was that engraving of the foreign mark of manufacturer/bank on gold bars was defaced and then these bars were smuggled into the country.
The search operation was carried out under the provisions of Foreign Exchange Management Act (FEMA) at various premises in Jaipur, Kolkata and Chennai which resulted in the seizure of unaccounted Indian currency and foreign currency worth Rs 3.75 crore, gold bar/pieces/jewellery weighing 26.97 kgs and silver weighing 12.22 kg along with incriminating documents.
Electronic and digital devices seized are still to be examined and may lead to further details of illegal dealings.
This search operation revealed widespread smuggling of gold, remittance through hawala channel and huge evasion of customs duty, GST, Income Tax etc, the ED said. (ANI)

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