December 5, 2023
Supply: Outlook India

Enforcement Directorate Launches Raids in Alleged Sand Mining Rip-off Throughout Tamil Nadu.

The Enforcement Directorate (ED) has initiated searches at greater than 25 areas throughout Tamil Nadu, suspecting an intensive sand mining Rip-off involving potential cash laundering and tax evasion. The main focus of the investigation facilities on whether or not the tax akin to the sale of sand extracted from riverbeds was precisely recorded in authorities accounts by the digital payments issued to quite a few lorry homeowners and operators.

On Tuesday, a number of groups from the ED concurrently performed searches at varied websites in Tamil Nadu. These areas encompassed sand mines, gross sales depots, and different institutions allegedly implicated within the illicit sand mining operation, which is believed to contain illicit monetary actions and tax irregularities. Among the many major targets of the raids are chartered accountant S Ramachandran and sand mining contractor Rathinam. Notably, the searches have been predominantly concentrated in Dindigul, Tamil Nadu, the place Rathinam is predominantly primarily based.

In line with out there info, the Tamil Nadu police weren’t pre-informed concerning the raids. As an alternative, the ED groups collaborated with the Central Armed Police Pressure to facilitate their operations. A police official knowledgeable The Hindu, “There’s info that searches are happening in additional than 25 areas in Vellore, Tiruchi, Karur, Pudukottai and so forth at sand gross sales depots and the workplaces/residences of sand mining contractors.”

The searches prolong to each the workplaces and residences of outstanding sand mining contractors. Notably, the mining portfolio throughout the Tamil Nadu authorities is below the purview of Durai Murugan, who additionally holds the place of Common Secretary throughout the ruling DMK celebration. Oversight of sand mining operations from riverbeds, in addition to their subsequent sale at designated depots or gross sales factors, falls below the jurisdiction of the Tamil Nadu Water Assets Division.

Studies point out that sand transactions happen by an internet site operated by the Water Assets Division, with digital receipts issued on the gross sales depots. Allegedly, a good portion of sand transactions transpire offline, however these transactions usually are not constantly recorded within the official information. The investigative company is now delving into whether or not the tax revenues have been precisely accounted for in authorities coffers in relation to the digital receipts distributed to quite a few automobile homeowners and operators.

ED raids 25+ locations over Tamil Nadu Sand Scam. - Asiana Times
ED has initiated searches at greater than 25 areas throughout Tamil Nadu.

Over the previous a number of months, Enforcement Directorate (ED) officers have been actively gathering knowledge on sand excavators working alongside riverbeds in varied districts together with Tiruvallur, Kancheepuram, Vellore, Pudukottai, Tiruchi, Karur, amongst others. Moreover, investigators have been compiling info on sand lorries which have entered roughly 15 areas in these districts for the aim of buying and transporting sand.

Of their pursuit of proof, ED groups are completely reviewing footage from Closed Circuit Tv Cameras (CCTVs) put in at sand sale depots. They’re additionally searching for entry to video recordings at toll plazas and different key factors alongside the roads main to those depots. Moreover, the gadgets used to retailer knowledge associated to sand gross sales will likely be subjected to verification.

The investigation may even embody figuring out the estimated quantity of sand offered and the monetary proceeds garnered by each on-line and offline transactions. It should additionally deal with how a lot of this info has been correctly recorded, forming an important facet of the inquiry into the alleged cash laundering case.

In Pudukottai district, ED officers concurrently performed checks on the workplace and residence of sand mining contractor S. Ramachandran. The ED groups, organized into teams, commenced their examinations at Mr. Ramachandran’s workplace situated in Pudukottai city and at his residence close to Vallathirakottai within the morning. Para-military personnel offered safety protection throughout these checks, in accordance with police sources.

One other crew from the ED, escorted by para-military personnel, carried out inspections on the Kondayampettai sand storage level in Tiruchi metropolis.

The searches are additionally underway on the premises of sand mining contractor Rathinam, in addition to people related to him, as confirmed by official sources.

In abstract, the Enforcement Directorate has launched into a widespread operation, conducting searches at over 25 areas in Tamil Nadu, as a part of an investigation into an alleged sand mining rip-off. This operation is rooted in suspicions of cash laundering and tax evasion within the sale of sand extracted from riverbeds.

The ED is scrutinizing the accuracy of tax reporting in authorities accounts, particularly analyzing the digital payments issued to lorry homeowners and operators. The searches have focused key figures together with chartered accountant S Ramachandran and sand mining contractor Rathinam, with a major give attention to areas in Dindigul, Tamil Nadu. The raids have been carried out with the help of the Central Armed Police Pressure, and Tamil Nadu police weren’t pre-informed concerning the operation. The investigation additionally extends to the residences and workplaces of main gamers within the sand mining business, elevating questions concerning the correct accounting of tax revenues derived from sand gross sales.

This operation unfolds towards the backdrop of the involvement of influential political figures, together with Durai Murugan, who oversees the mining portfolio throughout the Tamil Nadu authorities.