The Income Tax Department said on Thursday it has attached a benami plot in Noida worth ₹400 crore belonging to BSP chief Mayawati's brother Anand Kumar and his wife ahead of by-elections in Uttar Pradesh.
A senior IT official told IANS that the wealth of Anand Kumar and his wife rose steeply between 2007 to 2012, coinciding with the years Mayawati was the Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister.
The official said that Anand Kumar, a businessman who maintains a low profile in the party, had been on the radar of the Income Tax Department even before the 2017 Uttar Pradesh Assembly elections that brought the BJP to power.
The total properties apparently belonging to Anand Kumar and his wife are estimated at ₹1,300 crore.
The official revealed that Anand Kumar was the proprietor of over 12 companies and had amassed a wealth of over ₹440 crore in cash and properties worth ₹870 crore.
According to BSP leaders, Anand Kumar is currently the BSP Vice President while his son Akash Anand is National Coordinator.
The IT action comes at a time when Mayawati is facing the heat of the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) in the sale of 21 state-run sugar mills and the construction of memorials during her chief ministership.
Last week, the CBI raided the premises of several former and current IAS officers in the state in connection with the sugar mills case, including the residence of former Principal Secretary Netram, considered a close aide of the BSP chief.
On March 12 this year, just before the Lok Sabha election, the Income Tax department also raided over a dozen locations of Netram over suspected tax evasion amounting to ₹100 crore.