BHUBANESWAR: A fortnight after the arrest of an iron scrap dealer for Rs 10 crore GST fraud, the State enforcement wing on Friday nabbed two businessmen for allegedly availing and passing bogus input tax credit (ITC) of Rs 115.1 crore by producing fake invoices of Rs 641 crore. The accused Managing partner of Tirupati Traders Gurdit Dang and Director of Smartageis Trade Venture Pvt Ltd of Rourkela Sujay Maitra are being interrogated. Dang was also an authorised representative of Satguru Metals and Power Pvt Ltd.
While Dang was arrested from Rourkela, Maitra was nabbed in Bhubaneswar. The fraudulent activities came to fore during an investigation made on a complaint filed by one dealer from Balasore district which led to interrogation of existing dealers at Panikoili, Baripada, Rasgobindpur, Bargarh, Puri and Balasore.
Commissioner of CT and GST Sushil Kumar Lohani said the accused persons in collusion with others have availed bogus ITC by raising fake purchase invoices against 16 fictitious/non-existent business entities located at Angul, Rourkela, Bonai, Erasama, Tirtol, Riamal and Sundargarh.
They had managed to collect identity documents, including PAN, Aadhaar, bank passbook of plumbers, drivers, electrical mechanic, gas distributing boys, unemployed youth and poor for creation and operation of fake firms. “They hoodwinked people from places in Odisha and Jharkhand on the pretext of engaging them in different companies and in some cases to provide them regular income of Rs 5,000 per month. They misused the documents to obtain GST registration,” Lohani said.
The house rent agreements in all 16 firms were also found to be forged during the investigation. In two cases, the house rent agreements have been signed during 2018 in the name of a house owner who died in 2007.
While goods were manufactured without payment of tax by Satguru Metals and Power Pvt Ltd, purchase and sale invoices were made in the name of fictitious firms instead of Satguru Metals to regularise the illegal transaction.
Sources said Dang and Maitra had obtained mobile SIM cards in the name of proprietors of fake firms without their knowledge for the generation of e-waybills and banking transactions. The State GST Enforcement Wing has so far arrested 20 fraudsters for their involvement in the issuance of fake invoices.