The Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) on Saturday arrested a Mumbai-based chartered accountant besides a senior income tax official from Chennai in connection with a case of bribery.
The bureau also searched the house of the accountant, Shreyas Bhandari, who was held along with Joint Commissioner (IT-Range VI), Chennai, Sallong Yaden, in the capital of Tamil Nadu on Saturday.
According to sources in the investigating agency, the CBI arrested Bhandari and Yaden after having monitored them for a fortnight. The two were apprehended while travelling in a car in Chennai. Rs 8 lakh cash was discovered in the automobile. The two men were unable to clarify the provenance of the money in any satisfactory manner, sources said.
Bhandari is allegedly an acquaintance of a senior IRS officer in the I-T department’s investigations department and is said to have been in touch with the accountant in Chennai, CBI sources said. Bhandari runs a chartered accountancy firm in Chennai but maintains business ties to Mumbai. Two more persons were arrested along with Bhandari and Yaden – the CBI has withheld their identities.
The bureau conducted searches at 16 places, including, Mumbai, Chennai and Assam, and seized cash and ornaments amounting to Rs 1 crore, besides 16 laptops, 13 CPUs, 9 mobile phones, 4 iPads and property papers. In Mumbai, CBI seized Rs 50 lakh cash.
Sources said Bhandari’s accountancy firm sought a favourable report from Yaden in connection with the tax assessment of one of their clients and had allegedly contacted him through a senior IRS official. The Special Branch of the CBI, which keeps tabs on government servants, began the probe when it learnt that Bhandari was in contact with Yaden.
After monitoring the two men for nearly a fortnight, CBI arrested them when investigators realised the deal had been struck.