TN: IT Sleuths Raid Saravana Stores & Lotus Group, Unearth Cash & Jewels Worth Rs 400 Cr
The Logical Indian Crew Tamil Nadu
February 11th, 2019 / 6:14 PM
Image Credit: The News Minute (Representational)
Chennai’s popular retail firm Saravana Stores and two real estate companies- Lotus Group and GSquare are in trouble as the I-T Department officials have seized an undisclosed income of Rs 433 crore during raids at 74 locations across Chennai and Coimbatore in Tamil Nadu. Reportedly, the raids were carried out over several days.
IT Department officials recovered cash
Reportedly the IT sleuths had to dig up graveyards to unearth unaccounted cash, documents, gold and diamonds, all of which are worth several hundred crore rupees. During the search operation, officials seized 25 crores in cash, 12 kg gold and 626 carats of diamond. Teams as many as 120 were involved in the state-wide searches while 800 officers were specifically deployed for this operation.
Times of India reported that the IT Department officials were informed that Sarvana Store Bramdamai owner Yogarathinam Pondurai and Ramajayam alias Bala, owner of GSquare and Lotus Company, were involved in an illegal land transaction and bought a building in Chennai for which they paid a total amount Rs 180crore in cash.
A senior I-T official said, “Before our teams reached the spot, the assessees got information about the searches. Some police officials alerted owners of business establishments including Pondurai and Bala about possible I-T searches as heavy police protection had been sought and many cares were hired by I-T department to transport officials”.
The systems were rigged
Reportedly, Pondurai and Bala put most of the documents along with cash, gold and diamonds in an SUV and asked the driver to keep driving across the city. Meanwhile, all records from the computers and the CCTV camera footages. An IT official said that they intercepted the SUV with the help of the police. “Not much could be saved from the vehicle, but we got information about several bags of valuable buried in burial grounds and dumped in some buildings,” said the IT official.
The News Minute reported the accounting softwares connected to Saravana Stores were rigged, the software for which was provided by Giri technologies. The team of I-T professionals recovered all the deleted data from the seized computers and about Rs 284 crore of unaccounted income was detected from Pondurai’s business and Rs 149 crore from two other real-estate companies owned by Bala.
Written by : Akansha Soni (Intern)
Edited by : Sromona Bhattacharyya