IT raids continue for second day, foreign currency found


Bhopal : The Income Tax (IT) department has found foreign currency worth over Rs.25 lakh (Rs.2.5 million) during the second day of raids on residences of government officials and businessmen here Friday, officials said.

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Raids started Thursday on the residence of Principal Secretary, Women and Child Development, Tinu Joshi and her husband Arvind Joshi, who is the principal secretary, Jail and Parliamentary Affairs department, among others.

“Investigation and search operations are on. Over Rs.3 crore in cash has so far been recovered from the house of the Indian Administrative Service (IAS) couple. Besides, details of bank deposits worth Rs.2.25 crore have also been seized,” Director General of Investigations (I-T) for Madhya Pradesh and Chhattisgarh, Brajesh Gupta said Friday.

“Bank notes were recovered in a suitcase during raids that started Thursday. The action was taken on the basis of documents of heavy investments made in an insurance company by these officials, found during a similar exercise in 2009,” Gupta said.

According to sources, the couple is said to be involved in foreign transactions worth crores of rupees. The couple had also floated a company with a local businessman, in their son’s name.

Sources said Joshi confessed all the money was from unaccounted sources. There were also simultaneous raids at the houses of retired Bhopal Municipal Corporation commissioner M.A. Khan and a senior Chhattisgarh cadre IAS officer in Raipur, from where details about bank accounts with Rs.30 crore were found.

The residences of road and bridge development engineer R.D. Chaudhary, superintending engineer in Power Works Department, Deepak Asai, his wife Jyoti Asai, and businessmen Sunil Agrawal and Pawan Agrawal dealing in fertilisers besides ICICI bank manager Seema Jaiswal and bank agent Bharti Bhasne were also raided.

The Income Tax department is collecting details of accounts of persons concerned and their lockers were being searched. Documents relating to investment have been seized.

More than 13 places across Madhya Pradesh and Chhattisgarh have been raided so far following information from the Financial Intelligence Unit (FIU) that benami (proxy) investments worth crores of rupees have been made in various financial institutions.