The Income Tax Department on Thursday launched multiple raids at over 100 locations in Tamil Nadu and Andhra Pradesh as part of a tax evasion probe against mining and mineral export companies, officials said.
The searches are being conducted at the premises of at least four such business groups in Chennai, Coimbatore, Tirunelveli, Tuticorin and Karaikal in Tamil Nadu and Vishakhapatnam and Srikakulam in Andhra Pradesh, they said.
One of the firms identified by the Income Tax Department officials is VV minerals of Tamil Nadu.
Over 130 Income Tax Department officials are conducting the operation with assistance from security and police personnel, they said.
They said the companies that are being searched are involved in mining, processing and export of beach sand minerals in an alleged illegal manner that led the taxman to probe tax evasion charges against them. The alleged illegal profits earned through this, they said, was subsequently ploughed for investments into other businesses of these groups like spinning mills, sugar mills, hotels, engineering colleges and some blue metal businesses.
Some overseas transactions of these companies, made in alleged violation of tax laws, is also under the scanner of the department and the sleuths are looking for documents, to substantiate these charges, during the raids, they added.