Cases involving over Rs 1,800 crore duty evasions, highest in past five years, by firms and individuals through misuse of various government trade promotional schemes were detected by the Directorate of Revenue Intelligence in last fiscal.

As many as 527 cases involving duty exports benefit of Rs 1,841 crore were registered by the DRI, mandated at checking revenue leakage in domestic and international trade among others, during 2011-12 compared to Rs 826.47 crore in 2010-11.

“There has been a rise in duty (export/import) evasion amount in last fiscal. Most of the cases registered by DRI were related to under valuation and mis-declaration of goods or consignments and misuse of end use notifications issued by government during trade transactions,” a DRI official said.

He said 56 cases involving Rs 371.17 crore duty evasions were found by the agency alone through mis-declaration and misuse of end use and the highest of 186 cases were filed in the last fiscal involving evasion of Rs 496.24 crore.

Besides, the snoop agency has also found instances of misuse of Special Economic Zones (SEZs), Export Processing Zones (EPZs) and Export Oriented Units (EOUs) to the tune of several hundred crores of rupees between 2011-12.

As many as 434 cases involving duty evasion of Rs 724.46 crore were registered by the agency during 2007-08 as against 340 cases (Rs 1,528.59 crore) in 2008-09 and 391 cases (Rs 826.47 crore) in 2009-10.

“The agency is keeping a vigil on import and export consignments. The cases are promptly made and action is taken expeditiously. Besides, field officers are being specifically informed about any suspicious trade transactions,” the official said.

According to a recent Finance Ministry report on black money, the international trade system is subject to a wide range of risks and vulnerabilities, which provide unscrupulous entities an opportunity to launder money.

Misuse of export promotion schemes such as drawback, Duty Entitlement Pass Book (DEPB), Duty Free Import Authorisation (DFIA) and Vishesh Krishi Gram Upaj Yojana (VKGUY) also lead to generation and flow of black money, it said.

“Several cases of forgery of export promotion scheme, scrips or licenses, meant to claim duty exemption in imports have been detected, which highlight another aspect of black money generation and movement,” the report added.

More In: Business | Economy