The Income Tax Department on Friday said it seized Rs 1.44 crore in undisclosed cash and Rs 2.48 crore worth unaccounted jewellery in searches conducted in five locations in Kashmir in connection with terror funding activities. "Undisclosed cash of Rs 1.44 crore and unaccounted jewellery of Rs 2.48 crore were seized. The documentary evidence collected and examined so far shows undeclared property transactions of more than Rs 41 crore, primarily in the Kashmir valley and concealed financial transactions of nearly Rs 17 crore," the department said in a statement. The search actions were part of the department’s continued drive against use of black money by disruptive elements in the J-K state , the Central Board of Direct Taxes (CBDT) said in a press release adding that the operations also send a message of deterrence and obviation to those intending to vitiate the democratic process of free and fair elections.
"Several hard disks were also seized and their analysis is likely to lead to identification of third parties that have indulged in property and financial transactions that have been deliberately concealed from the tax authorities," the Tax department said. One of the operations was against a prominent LoC trader who apparently used proxies to conduct large cross-LoC trade in the past six years. It was found that large undisclosed profit earned by him has been diverted to allegedly suspect elements in the Valley. "During the action, documents of transactions in the names of some of the proxies were found. Investigations are in progress to determine the clandestine cross-LOC trade conducted by the tax evader through the Custodian of the Trade Facilitation Center, Srinagar," the Income Tax department said in a statement.
In another operation conducted at a big land and property broker of Srinagar, evidence was found of series of land transactions revealing that Rs 4.21 crore were completely concealed from the tax and other regulatory authorities. It is also a matter of record that the tax evader has never filed any income tax return. The department also searched covered a hotelier and a retailer of liquor in the Valley, who has been allegedly earning large undisclosed profits on sale of liquor as well as from his hotel business and has not shown cash receipts in his books of account. Hard disks containing digital evidence have been seized which support the charge of deliberate attempt to evade tax and earn large income in cash that is willfully and consciously kept outside the tax net.
A family business group in Jammu and Katra also came under the scanner. It was found that the group has routinely conducted a significant proportion of their business in unaccounted cash and the money so earned has been round-tripped in real estate deals in Jammu and Katra. The untaxed proceeds have also allegedly been used to construct a retail mall in Jammu and to acquire expensive jewellery for the family members.