Raids: Deluge of new notes in 200 searches

There have been over 200 searches across the country for black money since the notes ban and crores have been found in new 2,000-rupee notes that are not so easily available at banks and ATMs yet.

Behind the raids, say sources, is intel provided by government “informers” lurking at “strategic points” to track the movement of high currency notes. This may mean someone’s watching you at a bank or a market, but sources in the Income Tax department have refused to reveal anything.

The serial numbers of the Rs. 2,000 notes has helped investigators in tracking down the bank from where the notes were issued and where officials may be involved in helping launder money.

CCTV footage from places where bigger notes are likely to be spent – like jewellery shops – has also contributed to the raids.

Tax officials say around 120 crores has been seized till now and 1,500 crores in unaccounted wealth have been traced.

Officials have pieced together how bundles of new notes are being routed out of banks – a question raised by many since images of new notes stacked up after raids started emerging.

Sources say those with black money have been known to take identity cards of labourers in bulk and hand them to bank officials, who obliged by exchanging the old notes with new ones.

 

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