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ED seizes gold, silver and currency worth crores of rupees

Representational image.

Representational image.   | Photo Credit: Reuters

Operation carried out under Foreign Exchange Management Act in Jaipur, Kolkata and Chennai

The Enforcement Directorate (ED) has seized gold bars and jewellery weighing 26.97 kg, 12.22 kg of silver and ₹3.75 crore in foreign and Indian currency from Jaipur, Kolkata and Chennai.

The operation was carried out under the Foreign Exchange Management Act.

The searches were based on an input that Maharaja Jewellers, Bhagwati Jewellers and Ladiwala Associates of Jaipur were purchasing smuggled gold bars from Harsh Bothra of Chennai and Banka Bullions Private Limited, said the agency.

Maharaja Jewellers’ proprietor is Tara Chand Soni, Bhagwati Jewellers is owned by Ram Gopal Soni and Ladiwala Associates by Honey Ladiwala, it said.

As it turned out, various individuals were involved in smuggling of high-purity gold bars and, after passing through various entities, they were being sent to Jaipur mainly via Kolkata.

The smugglers would remove engraving/embossing of foreign manufacturers on gold bars before bringing them to India using various modes of transportation. Jewellery made using the smuggled gold and proceeds generated through its sale would never be accounted for.

The funds for gold smuggling were transferred through the “hawala” agents.

“This search operation also revealed huge evasion of Customs Duty, GST, income tax, etc,” said an official.

Apart from the gold, silver and cash, the ED has seized documents, electronic and digital devices that are being examined.

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Printable version | Mar 28, 2020 11:41:52 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/ed-seizes-gold-silver-and-currency-worth-crores-of-rupees/article30841570.ece

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