- Police began counting the demonetised cash after midnight with more to go
- According to NIA official the cash belonged to four or five "individuals"
- Police raided the home of a businessman and builder based on questioning
The police started counting the cash a little after midnight and, by this morning, had come to a figure of Rs 97 crore with more to be counted.
After a tip-off, the National Investigation Agency (NIA) and the police, along with RBI and Income Tax officers first raided a hotel in Kanpur and caught some people. Based on their questioning, the police then raided the home of one Anand Khatri, a businessman and builder.
The cash was in Rs 500 and Rs 1,000 notes, which were demonetized by the government in November 2016.
The money allegedly belongs to a group of people. Anand Khatri's business, the police suspect, was a cover for money-laundering.
"I am told he is a businessman as a cover but is involved in these kinds of activities. He is the main conduit in the exchange of money. 16 people have been arrested. We were getting information that efforts are on to stack currency and exchange it in some manner," said Anand Kumar, the acting police chief of Uttar Pradesh.
An NIA official was quoted as telling news agency ANI that the cash belonged to four or five "individuals or companies", including a prominent detergent-maker. Some of the he arrests were made from a hotel near the house.
Police sources say the "involvement of government officers" is being looked into. Sources also say that a possible modus operandi could have been to route this money through foreign companies.
Four months ago, the country's central bank said nearly 99 per cent of the demonetized notes had been returned into the markets.
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