Kanpur/Kannauj : Kanpur perfumer Piyush Jain was arrested on Sunday night for evasion of Goods and Services Tax (GST).
Jain recently made headlines after pictures of a raid at his premises showing officials counting heaps of currency notes with note counting machines went viral recently. A sum of Rs 284 crores in cash were seized from his home in Kanpur and Kannauj.
Directorate General of GST Intelligence (DGGI) Ahmedabad recovered Rs 10 crore more cash from the factory and residence of perfume businessman Piyush Jain, who is the promotor of Odochem Industries of Kannauj district in Uttar Pradesh, official sources said.
Unaccounted sandalwood oil, perfumes worth crores have also been seized from Jain’s factory, sources said.
Raids were also carried out at offices and godowns owned by a transporter – M/s Ganpati Road Carriers, also in Kanpur – after which the action shifted to Piyush Jain’s premises.
“This is the biggest recovery in the history of the Central Board of Indirect Taxes and Customs (CBIC),” said Vivek Johri, the Chairman of the Central Board of Indirect Taxes and Customs (CBIC).
According to DGGI sources, the searches which started on Friday, unearthed Rs 177 crore from Jain’s Anandnagar house in Kanpur and Rs 107 crore unaccounted cash from his Kannauj house.
A team of 50 tax officials, comprising units from Uttar Pradesh and Gujarat (Ahmedabad) were involved in search operations.
Sources privy to the probe said Jain was taken to a safe house and questioned for several hours. A set of questions were posed to him but he was not able to satisfy the investigators.
Jain was arrested for evasion of tax and making multiple invoices in the name of fake firms.
Sources said that during interrogation, Jain claimed that Rs 284 crore in cash recovered from his houses was his money accumulated after selling 400 kg of gold left by his ancestors.
As per the officer, on being asked about the reason for selling gold, the trader said that he had a requirement of cash for investment in business. “Piyush said he sold gold in batches, for the past many years, to small jewellers,” said the DGGI officer.
Meanwhile, to investigate the truth of his claims, the investigating officers are engaged in breaking the safes and walls of his ancestral Chhipaiti house in Kannauj. Agencies have also recovered 250 kg of silver and 25 kg of gold from Kannauj residence.
IT department sources said that there are 36 people inside the businessman’s house and factory, including officers of GST Intelligence and Income Tax.
Nine drums of ‘sandal’ oil has also been found here and bundles of Rs 2,000 notes have been recovered from cardboard boxes. Note counting machine has also been found in the businessman’s house.
Meanwhile, a cellar has also been found in Piyush’s Kannauj residence. The investigation team has also expressed the apprehension of some more secret lockers in the walls of Piyush Jain’s house. A team of architects and experts have been called from Lucknow to trace them out.
During the searches, some diaries and bills were also found by the officials.