Mumbai: The Income Tax department would initiate action against one of its officers who allegedly intimated the Managing Director of Riddhi Siddhi Bullion Ltd about searches conducted at his premises.
"We have written to the Central Board of Direct Taxes (CBDT) and it will take action against him. We suspect that he is the one who leaked information on searches to Pritiviraj Kothari (the MD of the company)," an official said.
According to sources, the department started searches at Riddhi Siddhi on Tuesday (June 11) at around 7 AM but fifteen minutes prior to that, Kothari left his home and till today he is untraceable though he is reportedly moving around the city.
Meanwhile, sources also said that searches at the 55 premises of Kothari, including his house, were over.
"We have seized documents, computer data etc... Now the process of verifying will start. The process of going through the data will take time as its voluminous," a source said.
Meanwhile, Bombay Bullion Association (BBA) has welcomed the action by Income Tax.
"BBA welcomes the enquiry by government and Income Tax department on those who are involved in illegal hawala trade by taking shelter under bullion and jewellery trade. Due to few such dealers, the Bullion and jewellery industry has lost its faith amongst government and public," BBA president Mohit Kamboj said, adding that the 'clean up operation' would create a healthy market for genuine bullion traders.
Incidentally, Kothari was president of the BBA earlier.
Meanwhile, tax officials raiding the premises of RSBL found a gun and five rounds at one of its premises and handed these over to the police, according to sources.