Gujarat conman, his devotees to face income tax scrutiny

June 4th, 2009 - 6:20 pm ICT by IANS  

Ahmedabad, June 4 (IANS) Conman Ashok Jadeja, arrested for allegedly cheating thousands of his gullible followers while posing as godman, faces more trouble as income tax officials are keen to probe not only his assets but also those of his victims.
Jadeja claimed he had divine powers and offered to triple money in a matter of days, attracting people from Gujarat and other states who gave him large amounts of cash and jewellery, police say.

“In any criminal case where a large amount of cash or jewellery is unearthed by police, the standard practice followed by the income tax department is to start investigations on the person’s undeclared assets. In this case, the same procedure would be followed by finding out both Jadeja’s declared and undeclared assets with the help of the police of concerned states wherever cases had been filed against him,” a senior tax official from the investigative wing here told IANS.

Jadeja was nabbed by police with his wife Neetu June 1 with Rs.1.98 crore in cash stashed in a car in Ahmedabad.

He was then trying to leave the city as he had come to know police were looking for him in Gujarat and Rajasthan after members of the Sansi community in Jodhpur district of Rajasthan filed a case of cheating against him in the neighbouring state.

The official, speaking on condition of anonymity, said that apart from Jadeja, the people he cheated too could be penalised under the provisions of the Income Tax Act if they had not declared the cash and jewellery “gifted” to him in their income tax returns.

The department would keep tabs on the progress of the investigation being carried out by the Gujarat police to know the names and addresses of victims and Jadeja’s relatives.

Jadeja could be questioned by the department to know their tax liabilities, the official said.

The income tax circles in other states would also be informed of the findings, the official added.

Delhi Police too have launched a parallel probe in the matter after receiving a number of complaints from people in the capital that Jadeja had cheated them.

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