31 Gupta properties seized by Indian revenue authorities

31 Gupta properties seized by Indian revenue authorities

- Indian government officials have seized at least 31 properties owned by the controversial Gupta brothers

- Indian authorities conducted a four-day long raid in Delhi, Saharanpur, Dehradun, Haridwar and Noida

- India’s income tax department has given the brothers until March 26 to appear before authorities

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The net is closing around Ajay, Atul and Rajesh Gupta. While South African law enforcement agencies are doing all they can to ensure the brothers are brought to book for their role in state capture, the brothers are also facing problems in India.

Indian government officials have reportedly seized 31 properties belonging to the Guptas during a four-day raid in Delhi, Saharanpur, Dehradun, Haridwar and Noida. Among the properties is a R200 million temple which was built in honour of the brother’s father.

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The Indian income tax department has given the brothers until March 26 to appear before authorities after the brothers requested an extension to the original March 16 deadline. The brothers need to answer for alleged money laundering and fraudulently acquiring properties.

Briefly.co.za discovered that Indian authorities found documents which point to between 60 and 125 other Gupta-owned properties scattered across India.

The Guptas used codes to hide the exact location and identity of these properties from tax officials.

Authorities also seized more than R1.7 million in bank accounts and over 300 signed blank cheques. The cheques were in the possession of Anil Gupta who is a brother-in-law of the Guptas.

Indian authorities are investigating 12 individuals and entities with links to the brothers, this includes the Bank of India and the Bank of Baroda who are thought to have transferred R98 million to one of the brothers.

"If the brothers still do not turn up then necessary action would be taken as per I-T [Income Tax] rules. A representative of the Gupta brothers had come to the I-T office in Dehradun, seeking a month's time. He did not disclose the reasons for seeking the extension so he was allowed 10 more days," an Indian revenue authority official said.

Nine Gupta-owned businesses have filed for business rescue since December of last year when Cyril Ramaphosa won the ANC’s presidential election.

The Gupta brothers refused to appear before Parliament for the Eskom inquiry, the family lawyer said those proceedings were nothing more than political showboating with unfair questioning of witnesses.

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Source: Briefly.co.za

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