The Enforcement Directorate (ED) on Monday said it has seized Rs 2.74 crore worth assets of a Kolkata-based business family which allegedly held a Swiss bank account and whose name figured in the Panama Papers leak.
The properties, seized under the Foreign Exchange Management Act (FEMA), include fixed deposits, bank balance and land at Kolkata belonging to Shyama Prasad Murarka (deceased) and Sanjay Murarka, the agency said.
Panama Leaks stated that Shyama Prasad Murarka and Sanjay Murarka were ”directors and shareholders in a company called Billipack Limited that was incorporated in the British Virgin Islands”, it said.
The Murarkas were the ”beneficiaries in the bank account of Billipack Limited maintained with HSBC, Switzerland. The investigation found that the Murarka family was holding assets in the form of foreign exchange in various accounts with HSBC Switzerland in their name and in the name of Billipack Limited in contravention of FEMA”.
The Panama Papers is referred to an investigation of a stockpile of records from Panamanian legal firm Mossack Fonseca by Washington-based International Consortium of Investigative Journalists (ICIJ) in 2016 and it had named several world leaders and celebrities, including Indians, who allegedly stashed away money abroad in offshore companies. In another action linked to the same leaks, the agency carried out searches on June 2 in Bengaluru against Rajendra Patil under the FEMA.
Residential premises of Rajendra Patil as well as office premises of Shree Parvathi Tex (India) Pvt. Ltd., where Patil is one of the directors, along with his family members, were searched.
The ED said Patil’s name ”surfaced” in the Panama Paper leaks.
It was alleged that Patil made an ”undisclosed” credit of Rs 66.35 crore in offshore entities and the searches brought to the fore that he had invested in various companies in Dubai, Tanzania and British Virgin Islands (BVI). ”He also held bank accounts in Dubai and Tanzania and several documents related to overseas investment made by Rajendra Patil were recovered during the searches,” the ED said.PTI