Home Crime Enforcement Directorate files case against media baron Raghav Bahl under PMLA for undeclared foreign assets

Enforcement Directorate files case against media baron Raghav Bahl under PMLA for undeclared foreign assets

Raj Kumar Modi, in an admission to the tax officials under oath, had alleged Bahl of using his shell company to launder money and evade tax. Modi is the Managing Director of PMC Fincorp, a shell company, which Bahl had invested money in. 

The Enforcement Directorate (ED) has filed a case against media giant and founder of The Quint, Raghav Bahl, under the provisions of the Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA).

Last month, picking up on the complaint filed by the Income Tax (IT) department against Bahl under Section 50 of the Black Money (Undisclosed Foreign Income and Assets) and Imposition of Tax Act 2015, the ED had initiated action against him. The law enforcement agency had lodged an Enforcement Case Information Report (ECIR), a police FIR equivalent, based on the complaint.

According to the IT department, Bahl has not disclosed his foreign assets, a property bought in London, UK for 31 lakh pounds. The economic intelligence agency has sought details from the IT department regarding the offense allegedly committed by Bahl.

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Bahl was served a Show-Cause notice on May 1, 2019, seeking information about the property and the source of funds for an investment made in that property.

On October 11, 2018, the IT officials had searched The Quint owner’s premises. Sleuths from the department had raided his residence in Noida to search for documents and other pieces of evidence related to the case.

Raj Kumar Modi, in an admission to the tax officials under oath, had alleged Bahl of using his shell company to launder money and evade tax. Modi is the Managing Director of PMC Fincorp, a shell company, which Bahl had invested money in.

Modi has reportedly made a statement to IT officials where he claimed that Bahl’s chartered accountant had given him ₹100 crores in cash “to convert into white”.

According to reports, Raghav Bahl and his wife have invested ₹3.03 crore in the penny stock company PMC Fincorp LTD. In spite of the company not indulging in any trade activity, the price of the shares shot up to ₹848/share in the next two years from the initial price of ₹5.50/share when Bahl had bought them. Bahl had then sold his shares following, which the share prices appear to have crashed again.

However, in a press release, Bahl had denied the allegations levelled against him. He has asserted that every transaction had been fully disclosed and assessed to tax.

In fact, the entire left-leaning media had then come out in support of Bahl, crying political vendetta.

Bahl had claimed the money invested in the property is from the income on, which taxes have been duly paid. He also claimed the information has consistently been disclosed in the Foreign Asset Schedule of the Income Tax Returns of Raghav Bahl, his wife and children.

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