Chennai: Income Tax officials continued for the fourth day on Sunday their search for unaccounted wealth at the premises of jailed AIADMK leader V.K. Sasikala's kin and their business associates. Over 100 bank accounts of shell companies, which are being managed by Jaya TV managing director Jayaraman, have been frozen by the IT officials. Jayaraman is a nephew of Sasikala.
Sasikala, jailed for corruption, was a confidante of the late Tamil Nadu Chief Minister J. Jayalalithaa and lived with her for decades.
According to a tax official, the raids continued at several premises.
While the official was mum on the amount of cash, jewellery and property documents allegedly seized, unconfirmed reports said that gold weighing around eight kg and several property documents had been seized by IT officials.
The official said the department waited for the individuals and companies associated with Sasikala to file their tax returns for the year. Based on the filing and the data with the IT department, the searches was carried out to detect tax evasion.
After analysing the documents and obtaining clarifications, tax demand would be raised, the official said.
The searches were conducted in connection with unexplained routing of cash post-demonetisation through shell companies allegedly connected to Sasikala and her nephew T.T.V. Dinakaran, who heads one of the wings of the AIADMK.
The IT department will look at the routing of funds within India whereas other agencies will look into the routing of money outside India, the official said.
"We have information about shell companies and the search is in connection with their operations," he said.
A decision on freezing the bank accounts of the searched persons and companies would be taken only after collating the data from the seized papers.
On Thursday, a team of around 1,800 IT officials knocked at the doors of 187 premises --residences and offices and farmhouses -- to carry out one of the biggest income tax searches on Sasikala's kin and associates.
The places raided included the residence of M. Natarajan, Sasikala's husband, in Thanjavur; Kodanad Tea Estate belonging to Jayalalithaa; Jazz Cinemas, Midas Distilleries, Sharada Paper and Boards, Senthil Group of Companies, Nilgiri Furniture in Coimbatore, Jaya TV, Namadhu MGR and several other premises in Tamil Nadu, Puducherry, Hyderabad and Bengaluru.