ED has seized about Rs 50 lakh cash, including a huge haul from a ‘baniyan’ dealer, as part of its crack down against ‘hawala’ dealers in the southern part of the country.
In the first case, officials said the agency seized Rs 24 lakh, Rs 13 lakh in foreign currency and rest Indian currency, from a dealer in Sowcarpet area of the Tamil Nadu capital.
Identified as M Qader, sources said, the dealer had made ‘baniyan’ (vest) selling his “front” business in the narrow bylanes of the bustling market in the southern metropolis.
“The agency has filed a case under the Foreign Exchange Management Act against the dealer as he was dealing in ‘hawala’. The action was taken based on specific inputs,” they said.
‘Hawala’ pertains to routing of huge tranches of cash to and from Indian shores by skirting the legal banking route and subsequently evading government duties, taxes and generating black money.
In the second case, agency sleuths seized another over Rs 25 lakh from another ‘hawala’ operative based in Nagercoil town of the Kanyakumari district.
They said the operative was remitting money to and from Dubai and Hong Kong and he too has been booked under FEMA.
“Both the actions were undertaken within this week. Further probe in the two cases is on,” they said.
The Enforcement Directorate (ED) is the empowered central agency to implement FEMA in the country.