New Delhi: Central excise officials Friday registered a case of alleged duty evasion of Rs 30 crore by a Kolkata-based iron and cement manufacturer firm and conducted searches at its various premises in West Bengal.
The searches were conducted in nine premises of Rashmi Group of Companies--Rashmi Cement Limited and Rashmi Metaliks Limited-- in Kharagpur and its headquarters in Kolkata, official sources said.
An email query and phone calls to the group did not yield any response.
The company, which deals in manufacturing of cement sponge iron besides iron ore mining and railway logistics, was allegedly evading excise duty by manipulating its accounts book and showing less quantity of goods, the sources said.
"Prima facie, duty evasion of at least Rs 30 crore has been detected and interrogation was continuing," an official, part of the searches, said requesting anonymity.
The sources also claimed to have found some secret locations from where the companies was allegedly carrying out its `unaccounted` manufacturing works to evade excise duty.
Various documents including soft and hard copies of account books have been seized by the officials, they said.
An excise duty of 12.36 per cent is levied on total value of manufactured goods.
The officials are examining companies accounts books of past fiscals to ascertain any duty evasion, the sources said.
A team of central excise will also question promoters of the group, who are currently avoiding authorities, for alleged duty evasion, they claimed.
"A team of 50 officials had started search operation since yesterday which was continuing today," the official added.
The CBI had last year registered two cases against the same company for allegedly causing a loss of over Rs 1,000 crore to the government exchequer by making false declarations in transportation of iron ore and its end use.