Acting on information of alleged investments in shell companies and benami deals worth over Rs 1,000 crore, the Income Tax department on Tuesday conducted searches and surveys on at least 22 locations in Delhiand adjoining areas allegedly linked to RJD chief Lalu Prasad.
Searches were carried out at the residential premises of 12 persons linked to the case while surveys were conducted at 10 office premises associated with the companies being investigated by the department, a senior tax official said.
The tax official said that the searches and surveys were conducted following an investigation of the investment pattern in “shell companies”.
Officials said the 12 included Vijay Kochar, Vinay Kochar, Ajay Kochar, Amit Katyal, Vivek Nagpal and Subhash Goel, some of whom they described as “prominent businessmen and real estate agents”.
The department is likely to invoke provisions of the newly-enacted Benami Transactions Act, 1988, which became operational from November 1 last year and carries a maximum punishment of seven years in jail and a fine. The action under this new law will be over and above the legal proceedings under the Income Tax Act, 1961, officials said.
Tax officials said the findings from the searches and surveys will be known only in the next few days.