Mumbai: The Income Tax department today conducted "open inquiries" at the premises of companies which invested in Purti Sugar and Power run by beleaguered BJP chief Nitin Gadkari and found many of their directors were people with small means like security guards and labourers.
"We conducted open inquires at 12 places in Mumbai and also in Pune, Nagpur and Kolkata," a senior IT official said speaking on condition of anonymity.
IT sources said statement of over 13 people, who were named as directors of these companies, have been recorded so far in Mumbai.
"People who were mentioned as Directors are men of no means. Most of them are security guards, labourers and astrologers, with many claiming they do not know how their names figured as directors," they said.
"These companies were started with paid up capital of about Rs 2,000 to Rs 3,000 but later huge amounts were pumped into the companies," sources said, without mentioning the names of entities at whose premises the inquiries were conducted.
IT sleuths at various locations have found that offices were being made to look like genuine companies registered with the Registrar of Companies.
"We found carpentry work underway at some of the locations," they said, adding "Prima facie these are shell (inactive companies set up to manoeuvre funds) companies."
Sources said if the companies were not able to explain the source of their funds "it will be considered as explained and concluded they had evaded taxes and would be penalized accordingly".