NEW DELHI/TIRUCHY:Sleuths of the Income Tax Department’s investigation wing from Chennai along with those from Tiruchy on Tuesday carried out extensive raids at the establishments of Vasan Healthcare Group and the residence of its promoter in Tiruchy, in the wake of allegations of former Union minister P Chidambaram’s son Karti’s links with these establishments. The raids were conducted to inquire into alleged irregularities in Tax Deducted at Source (TDS), said sources.
On September 17, Express had, in a report titled ‘PC, Vasan Eye Care and `223 crore Black Money’ highlighted how crores of rupees were surreptitiously funnelled into Vasan Eye Care through little-known chit fund company, JD Group, and other individuals and firms to hike the stake of Karti in Vasan.
An officer said that they are probing Advantage Strategic Consulting — a company allegedly linked to Karti — in the Aircel-Maxis case.
In 2005, Malaysian company Maxis wanted to buy 74 per cent stake for Rs 4,000 crore in telecom company Aircel owned by Chennai businessman C Sivasankaran, which was on the verge of bankruptcy. During its probe, the Enforcement Directorate found that Ausbridge Holding and Investments Pvt Ltd — a company in which Karti is a 94 per cent equity holder — bought shares in Aircel’s holding company — Advantage Strategic Consultancy Pvt Ltd, just before clearance was obtained from the Foreign Investment Promotion Board to the Aircel-Maxis deal.
“We are also probing if shares of Advantage Strategic Consultancy Pvt Ltd were bought at less than book value, allowing Ausbridge Holding and Investments Pvt Ltd to make a huge profit,” the officer said. He also noted that Advantage Strategic Consulting Private Limited bought shares in Vasan Eye Care through a middleman. The officer also said the raids have not been completed. “The team along Income Tax Department is still carrying out raids,” he said.