As many as 25 persons including two kingpins and as many professionals have been arrested in last four days for allegedly issuing fake invoices for taking input tax credit (ITC) under the goods and services tax (GST) regime. As many as 350 cases have been booked against 1,180 entities in the matter.
The actual amount of fake ITC claimed is being ascertained, sources in the directorate general of GST intelligence (DGGI).
Sources said search and investigation operations are on to identify and apprehend other persons involved in the racket and also the beneficiaries who have used the fake invoices to dodge taxes and indulge in money laundering.
A source said the cases would be investigated against the beneficiaries by the Enforcement Directorate.
It is also being ascertained whether issuers and beneficiaries could be booked under the Conservation of Foreign Exchange and Prevention of Smuggling Activities Act (Cofeposa).
The procedure for new GST registration is being tightened as well. The businesses whose owners or promoters do not have commensurate income tax payment records will require physical and financial verification before their companies can be given registration, sources said.
The drive was intensified following a high-level meeting in the department of revenue the previous Saturday. The meeting was attended by senior officials of DGGI, GST, GSTNetwork, Enforcement Directorate, Central Board of Indirect Taxes and Customs and Central Board of Direct Taxes.
Accordingly, a plan was chalked out whereby Directorate General of Analytics & Risk Management (DGARM), DGGI and CBDT collated data against the suspected entities. They took the help of GSTN and artificial intelligence tools to identify the network. The data was shared with the zonal units of DGGI and principal chief commissioners of the central gst zones.
Field formations have so far acted in Delhi, Bengaluru, Mumbai, Ludhiana, Chennai, Nagpur, Kolkata, Gurugram, Jind, Ballabhgarh, Ahmedabad, Surat, Vododra, Bhilai, Jodhpur, Hyderabad, Mathura, Raipur, Vishakhapatnam among other cities.