Income Tax Dept. Finds ₹800 Crore Cash Transactions After Raids on Telangana & AP Real-Estate Groups
According to the Central Board of Direct Taxes (CBDT), the Income Tax Department (I-T Dept.) unearthed transactions of more than ₹800 crores in value made in cash after it carried out raids on 3 real-estate firms in Andhra Pradesh & Telangana. The raids were conducted in the first week of January after I-T Dept. officials suspected tax evasion & illegal transactions being made by these 3 real-estate firms. The raids were conducted in a co-ordinated manner to prevent any of these firms from hiding or destroying evidence.
The real-estate firms which were raided are involved in land development & construction activities in Andhra Pradesh & Telangana. I-T officials raided more than 20 premises – offices & residences linked to these real-estate groups, the raided premises were located in multiple cities – Kurnool, Ananthapur, Kadapa, Nandyal, Bellary, Hyderabad and other locations in the 2 states. Police personnel prevented any person from going in and out of the raided premises during the raid so that the I-T officials could carry out their search properly.
I-T officials discovered many documents like handwritten books, unofficial & official agreements and digital evidence which will incriminate these realty firms. The digital data seized was obtained from a specialised software application, electronic devices used by the employees and the computers in the premises. One of the real-estate firms was caught using a software designed to “systemically modify” & eliminate the unaccounted cash received and then record in account books the sale consideration amount which matches the registered sale amount.
After the raids were completed, these 3 real-estate groups were found to have accepted cash transactions over the registered value of the properties sold and this extra unaccounted cash was being utilised to make payments for purchase of land and used for other unofficial expenditures. The raids led to a discovery of more than ₹1.64 crores of unaccounted physical cash and an overall ₹800 crores in the form of unaccounted cash transactions. Appropriate action will be taken against these real-estate firms and complicit individuals if they are found guilty on the charges against them by the I-T Department.