Service Tax searches at wedding decorators premises

The searches came a day after the I-T department conducted searches at the house of Maharashtra minister Bhaskar Jadhav.

Updated: Feb 20, 2013, 16:08 PM IST

Mumbai: A day after the I-T department conducted searches at the house of Maharashtra minister Bhaskar Jadhav, the Service Tax department on Wednesday conducted search operations at the offices of decorators who provided decorative items for the lavish wedding of his children.

Searches were being conducted at DG Decorators` office located in suburban Mumbai and its owner`s house by the Service Tax department, sources said.

The Directorate General of Central Excise Intelligence was also conducting searches at the decorator`s office and house at Karad in Satara district of Maharashtra, the sources said.

The I-T department had on Monday conducted searches at the premises Jadhav, who is the Minister of State for Urban Development, after he came under scanner for the lavish wedding hosted at Chiplun, when many parts of the state were facing the prospect of a severe drought.

The inquiries and searches were carried out by a team of 11 officers at his hotel as well as residence in Chiplun (Ratnagiri) and Karad (Satara) on February 18, I-T sources had said yesterday.

The I-T sleuths had also recorded the statement of the NCP leader on Monday night at his Chiplun residence, they said.

The department is gathering information about the huge expenses incurred on the elaborate wedding of Jadhav`s son and daughter on February 13.

Soon after the ceremony, the NCP had disapproved of the lavish wedding hosted by its minister and had termed it as "inappropriate" when many parts of Maharashtra were reeling under water scarcity.

"Such ostentatious show of wealth was inappropriate for those in public life," NCP spokesman Nawab Malik had said.

NCP chief and Union Agriculture Minister Sharad Pawar too had voiced his displeasure. Pawar had said that he could not sleep the whole night when he saw visuals of the wedding on television.