The Income Tax department seized Rs five crore from several premises in Bengaluru and other locations on Thursday. In a search launched by over 50 I-T officials in Bengaluru, Chennai and Erode, they recovered Rs 4.7 crore in newly introduced Rs 2,000 currency notes while the rest was old high-value and low-value denominations. The officials further recovered seven kilogram gold bullion from the flatowned by a civil contractor that worth around Rs two crore during the raid.
Soon after the high-value currency notes were demonetised by the government, finance minister Arun Jaitley had been continuously repeating that the Centre is monitoring the suspects of black money. The I-T department conducted a search operation on the day and recovered the cash. However, the shocking part of the incident was that a major portion of the amount was in Rs 2,000 currency notes that was introduced on November 8 by RBI Governor Urjit Patel post announcement of demonetisation of Rs 500 and Rs 2,000 notes by Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
The I-T officials called it ä highest seizure of the new currency in the country post demonetisation. “Some entry operators and bankers in Karnataka and Tamil Nadu are under the scanner. Such volume of new currency cannot be obtained without connivance of bank officials,” a senior I-T department official told PTI.
Stating reason behind the huge stack of newly introduced currency, the Central board of Direct Taxes (CBDT) said “the new notes and bullion are learnt to have been obtained by exchange of demonetised notes by payment of commission of an engineer and a contractor,” in a statement. The department has also found a number of identity cards of various individuals from the searched premises which could have been used to illegally change the old currency with new ones.
The department also seized some notes of Rs 100, demonetised notes of Rs 500 and a few gold biscuits besides documents of property purchase from the premises.