25 arrested in four days in a nationwide drive against GST scam

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Directorate General of GST Intelligence sources said, “In a nationwide drive against fake invoices, non-existent or fly-by-night firms and circular trading, 25 persons have been arrested in just four days.”

Amongst the 25 arrests is the son of a sugar baron MLA and two chartered accountants. Approximately 350 cases have been booked for issuing fake invoices against 1180 entities. However, the actual amount of fake input tax credit remains to ascertain.

An on-going search and investigation are underway to identify and apprehend people who have any involvement in the racket and other beneficiaries who may have used these fake invoices to evade GST, income tax, and money laundering.

Major goods involved in these cases are mild steel/ stainless steel scrap, articles of iron and steel, copper rod/wire, waste and scrap of a non-ferrous material, plastic, granules, PVC resin, readymade garments, gold and silver, construction services, works contract services, agro products, milk product, mobile, manpower supply services, advertisements, and animation services, etc.

The drive was intensified after a high-level video-conferencing meeting in the Department of Revenue on November 7. It was attended by all the senior officials of DGGI, GST, GSTN, Enforcement Directorate, CBIC, and CBDT.

So far, the Department of Revenue cracked down Delhi, Bengaluru, Mumbai, Ludhiana, Chennai, Nagpur, Kolkata, Gurugram, Ahmedabad, Surat, Vadodara, Bhilai, Jodhpur, Hyderabad, Visakhapatnam, etc in relation to the case.

The source at Directorate General of GST Intelligence said, “Considering the menace of the fake invoices and hawala racket and their damaging impact on the stability of the economy, it is also being examined whether, apart from taking action against the beneficiaries under GST laws, Income Tax Act, and Prevention of Money Laundering Act, Issuers of fake Invoices as well as beneficiaries of such invoices can be detained under Conservation of Foreign Exchange and Prevention of Smuggling Activities Act, 1974.”

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