Central probe agency, the Enforcement Directorate (ED), on December 15, 2018, in a statement, said that it has taken action against Shravan Gupta, the former MD of realty major Emaar MGF, under the Foreign Exchange Management Act (FEMA) for ‘holding USD 15,40,650 in his bank account maintained with Hong Kong and Shanghai Banking Corporation in Switzerland’. The ED said it has seized an agricultural land worth over Rs 10.27 crores in Delhi’s Bijwasan area, as an equivalent amount of the asset held abroad.
“The seizure order has been issued pursuant to investigation, which revealed that prima facie Gupta had foreign exchange held to the tune of USD 15,40,650 in his bank account in Hong Kong and Shanghai Banking Corporation (HSBC), Switzerland, situated outside India, in contravention of provisions of Section 4 of the FEMA, 1999. Gupta had not shown this amount in the income tax returns filed in India, for the period 2006-07. However, he had declared this amount in 2011-12 and paid appropriate taxes,” the ED said in a statement.
It added that Gupta ‘failed to produce any evidence of repatriating the entire amount to India, till date’. It added that the I-T Department had also filed a charge sheet against him in this case. In 2005, Emaar Properties entered the Indian real estate market in partnership with India’s MGF Group and invested Rs 8,500 crores, through the joint venture Emaar MGF Land. However, in April 2016, it decided to end this JV and two months later, Gupta, the then executive vice chairman and managing director of the JV, resigned from the post.
The agency added that the competent authority of the FEMA has also confirmed a similar seizure order of Rs 20.87 crores of assets of Dabur Group director, Pradip Burman. These cases are part of the list of 628 Indians who figured in a list of account holders in HSBC’s Geneva branch that India had obtained from the French government in 2007.