The Income Tax department seized more than Rs 30 crore in unaccounted cash and at least 40 kg of bullion and gold jewellery from the D Y Patil Group during a raid last week, sources familiar with the development told The Indian Express.
The tax department also seized documents pertaining to multiple investments in fixed deposits and real estate by the group, which is currently being evaluated by the agency, sources said.
“It is the highest ever spot seizure of cash and jewellery by the department so far. Apart from this, the department has seized a number of documents pertaining to investments of the group and is currently looking into its accounts,” said a source.
According to sources, the tax authority suspects that the educational institutes under the D Y Patil Group were allegedly taking capitation fee or donations for admission to its various courses. On May 2, the Supreme Court had termed the demand of capitation fee by private educational institutions illegal. The court had ruled that commercialisation and exploitation is not permissible in the education sector and institutions must run on a ‘no profit, no loss’ basis.
A number of educational institutes in India have been collecting capitation fees to provide admission to students in medical, engineering and other technical courses.
An analysis of the tax evasion cases by the tax department in 2015-16 found that education is one of the top sectors that generate black money. “Sectoral analysis in respect of admission of undisclosed income during searches conducted by the Income Tax department in the financial year 2015-16 indicates that the main sectors are manufacturing (31%), real estate (29%), trading (8%), educational institutions (7%), contractors (6%), services (5%), gems and jewellery (4%), etc,” Santosh Kumar Gangwar, Minister of State for Finance, had told the Lok Sabha on July 29.
The raids on the D Y Patil Group, conducted on July 27, covered at least 12-13 institutes in Pune, eight in Kolhapur and the rest in Mumbai. The raids — led the by the director-general investigations of Income Tax in Pune and Mumbai — were conducted at the dental, medical pharmacy and engineering colleges of D Y Patil Pratishthan.
Apart from the premises of the educational institutes, residences of members of the Patil family were also searched. These include Satej Patil, former MoS for Home in the Congress-NCP government in Maharashtra, Sanjay Patil, Ajinkya Patil, P D Patil and top officials such as the CFO and COO of the group.