Ajit Pawar's properties worth Rs. 1000cr seized by I-T Department
The Income Tax Department has provisionally attached properties worth over Rs. 1,000 crore linked to Maharashtra Deputy Chief Minister Ajit Pawar and his family members. The properties are reportedly located across Maharashtra, Delhi, and Goa. Tax raids were carried out at the houses and firms owned by the Deputy CM's relatives last month. Here are more details on this.
Why does it matter?
- This marks the latest instance of action by a central probe agency against an Opposition leader.
- During the past several years, Opposition parties including the Congress, the Trinamool Congress, and the Shiv Sena have alleged misuse of central probe agencies by the Bharatiya Janata Party-led central government.
- The Centre and the probe agencies, however, have denied the allegations.
Properties include office, resort, sugar factory
The seized properties include an office at Nirmal Tower in Mumbai, a sugar factory, a resort, and a residential property in Delhi, reports said. The I-T Department said the properties were bought illegally and the Anti-Benami Act has been invoked in the case. I-T Department sources told NDTV that Pawar and his family members are the "beneficiaries of the above Benami properties."
Raids were conducted last month
The I-T Department had carried out search operations and raids at properties linked to Pawar and his family in October. The agency had discovered unaccounted income of Rs. 184 crore during that operation. It had said the companies brought in unaccounted funds "by way of various dubious methods like introduction of bogus share premium, suspicious unsecured loans, receipt of unsubstantiated advance for certain services."
Pawar denied the allegations
Pawar had earlier denied the allegations leveled by the I-T Department. "We pay taxes every year. Since I am the Finance Minister, I am aware of the fiscal discipline. All entities linked to me have paid taxes," he said. Pawar's uncle and former Union Minister Sharad Pawar had also slammed the central government over last month's raids.