The Income Tax (I-T) department has detected unaccounted income of over Rs 175 crore after conducting searches on a Maharashtra and Goa-based business group, officials said.
The tax officials initiated a search and seizure operation on August 25 on a group that is in the business of steel manufacturing.
Over 44 premises are being searched by the officials in Maharashtra, Goa and other places.
"During the course of the search and seizure operation, many incriminating documents, loose papers and digital evidence were seized," said the tax department.
Evidence, according to the I-T department, detected during the search revealed that the group was engaged in the alleged fraudulent practice of booking bogus purchases of scrap and sponge iron from various 'fake invoice issuers'.
Premises of alleged fake invoice issuers were also covered during the searches by I-T officials.
"Such invoice issuers have admitted that they supplied only bills but no materials and also generated fake e-way bills to show it as genuine purchases and to claim GST input credit. With the active support of GST Authorities, Pune, the 'vehicle movement tracking app' was used to identify fake e-way bills," said the tax department.
The total bogus purchases identified from these parties, so far, is about Rs 160 crore. The verification is still in progress and quantum of bogus purchases is likely to increase substantially," it added.
The officials also claim to have discovered a shortage of goods to the tune of Rs 3.5 crore and excess stocks of Rs 4 crore which was found from the premises searched during this operation
Unaccounted cash, sources say, of Rs 3 crore and jewellery amounting to Rs 5.20 crore has been seized from different premises.
"Unaccounted silver articles of 194 kg valued at about Rs 1.34 crore have been found during the search and have been accepted and declared as additional income by the assessee. So far, a total of Rs 175.5 crore of unaccounted income has been unearthed including unaccounted cash and jewellery, shortage and excess of stock and bogus purchases," said the tax department.
The search operation is still continuing.
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