ED cracks down on Mahira Group
The Enforcement Directorate (ED) said that it recently raided 11 locations in Samalkha (Haryana) and Delhi belonging to Mahira Infratech Pvt. Ltd. and other companies of the Mahira Group, owned and controlled by Dharam Singh Chhoker and family under the Prevention of Money Laundering Act.
During the search, four luxury cars with an acquisition value of approximately Rs.4 crore, jewellery worth Rs.14.5 lakhs, cash amounting to Rs.4.5 lakhs, and evidence related to siphoning of homebuyer funds were seized.
The ED initiated PMLA investigations based on FIRs registered by Gurugram Police against Mahira Infratech Pvt. Ltd. for cheating and forgery.
Mahira Infratech Pvt. Ltd. had collected about Rs.360 crore from 1.497 home buyers under the affordable housing scheme, promising houses at Sector 68, Gurugram.
However, the said entity failed to deliver the houses and missed multiple deadlines.
The home buyers have been holding protests for the last one year against the Mahira Group, seeking delivery of the promised houses at the earliest.
ED investigations revealed that the said entity siphoned off home buyers’ money by booking fake construction expenditures in group entities.
Cash equivalent to the fake purchases was received back from the entities providing fake bills/ invoices by the Directors/ Promoters of Mahira Group, which was used for personal gains.
Several personal family expenditures were also booked as business expenditures in group entities.
The Directors also diverted home buyers’ money to other group entities as loans for personal gains.
“Preliminary investigations show that the Directors of Mahira Group siphoned off about Rs.107.5 crore (fake expenses to the extent of Rs.57 crore and loans to group entities to the extent of Rs.50.50 crore) from Mahira Infratech Pvt. Ltd. (belonging to home buyers of Sector 68 housing project) alone. Investigations with respect to financial transactions of other 4 affordable housing projects are in progress,” an ED official said.
The Directors of Mahira Group, Dharam Singh Chhoker, Sikander Singh, Vikas Chhoker, and other key employees remained absent during the ED search and have not joined the investigation to date.
Freezing orders in respect of offices and bank accounts of Mahira Group were issued during the search operations.
Further investigation into the matter is ongoing.
[With Inputs from IANS]
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