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NEW DELHI : The Income Tax Department said on Friday it has carried out a search operation on an ex-fund manager and chief trader of equities of a mutual fund house along with related share brokers, middlemen and entry operators. The search action covered more than 25 premises, spread across Mumbai, Ahmedabad, Vadodara, Bhuj and Kolkata, the department said.

As a result of the search operation conducted last Thursday, various incriminating evidences in the form of documents and digital data have been found and seized, the department said.

These pieces of evidence gathered during the search showed the fund manager and chief trader were allegedly sharing specific trade related information with brokers/middlemen and persons located in certain foreign jurisdictions, the department alleged.

These persons in turn, used such information for illicit gains in the share market by trading in such scrips either in their own account or account of their clients, the department alleged. These persons including family members of the fund manager have admitted in their statements that the unaccounted cash generated from the above operations was routed mainly through Kolkata based shell entities into their bank accounts, the department alleged.

From these bank accounts, funds have been further diverted into the bank accounts of companies or entities incorporated in India and some low tax jurisdictions, the department alleged. The gleaning of seized evidence has exposed the nexus between the ex-fund manager, middlemen, share brokers, and entry operators, the department alleged in its statement.

Evidence of large-scale unaccounted investment in cash loans, fixed deposits, immovable properties and their renovation, etc. have also been found and seized, the department alleged. More than 20 lockers have been put under restraint. So far, unaccounted deposits exceeding Rs. 55 crore have been seized, the department alleged. Further investigations are in progress.

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