This Article is From Jan 06, 2012

Delhi businessman Satish Sawhney admits to undisclosed income of Rs 73 crore

Delhi businessman Satish Sawhney admits to undisclosed income of Rs 73 crore
New Delhi: In the biggest ever disclosure of black money stashed abroad, a Delhi-based businessman has admitted to undisclosed income of Rs 73 crore to the Income Tax department. He also gave details of secret lockers held in banks in Switzerland, Singapore and the US.

The I-T department suspects a multi-layered Hawala racket and money laundering being operated through these accounts, both in India and abroad, and is probing the role of some high profile individuals with possible political links.

The disclosure by the businessman, identified as Satish Sawhney, came today after a team of Income Tax (I-T) sleuths from the newly created Directorate of Criminal Investigation (DCI) carried out simultaneous searches at his posh Sainik Farms bungalow and South Extension-I premises here.

Sawhney has surrendered the undisclosed income and it is expected to be realised in a fortnight, top I-T department sources said.

The DCI was created by the government to unearth black money with "criminal ramifications".

Sawhney, an energy sector consultant operating in the country and abroad, has been asked by the I-T department not to leave the country till a probe against him and his associates is completed.

The I-T team, according to the sources, has found that Swahney had five undisclosed foreign bank accounts-- one each in Zurich and Singapore and three in the US--besides being in the possession of eight 'almirah' sized lockers in banks in Delhi.

"Sawhney has admitted to having Rs 73 crore undisclosed income to the criminal investigation unit of the department. The searches on him were conducted after specific inputs were received about him," the sources said.

Jewellery worth an estimated Rs 1.5 crore and Rs 18 lakh in cash have also been reportedly seized in the operation conducted by a team of about 20 officials, sources said.

The I-T team, which swooped down on the Sainik Farms and South Extension-I premises of the businessman yesterday, is said to have found documents relating to the foreign bank accounts concealed in an SUV parked inside the bungalow.

Eight bank accounts in Delhi have been sealed by the I-T department after the searches today, sources said.

 "The bank accounts are all Delhi-based and are with ICICI, HDFC and SBI. They will be opened shortly," they added.

I-T officials, however, said this case had no links with the classified list of bank accounts of some individuals received from abroad which the DCI is already probing.

The DCI has also approached the CBDT to forward its requests to Switzerland, USA and Singapore to get details of the foreign bank accounts.