Category: Forex News

Enforcement Directorate questions businessman Niranjan Hiranandani in forex exchange violation case

The Enforcement Directorate (ED) on Monday questioned real estate tycoon and businessman Niranjan Hiranandani in connection with a foreign exchange violation case.

Niranjan Hiranandani, the promoter of prominent Mumbai-based realty company Hiranandani Group, and his son Darshan Hiranandani, were summoned by the probe agency to appear before it for questioning as part of a probe being conducted under the Foreign Exchange Management Act (FEMA).

Last month, Enforcement Directorate officials conducted a search operation at various premises associated with Niranjan Hiranandani and Darshan Hiranandani in Mumbai and several other locations.

Darshan Hiranandani has been living in Dubai for the past several years.

Niranjan Hiranandani and his family members were identified as beneficiaries of an offshore trust, accumulating assets exceeding $60 million. The group’s connection with the Pandora Papers was also disclosed during the investigation.

Between 2006 and 2008, the Hiranandanis established at least 25 companies and a trust in the British Virgin Islands. Investigations revealed that they routed investments totalling over Rs. 400 crores in the form of Foreign Direct Investments (FDIs) into group companies involved in real estate projects in Maharashtra and Tamil Nadu.

The probe agency has alleged that the utilisation of these funds did not align with the prescribed government guidelines.

One of the group entities, which received FDI, failed to repay loans acquired from a consortium of banks, resulting in its declaration as a Non-Performing Asset (NPA).

Interestingly, the incomplete project was subsequently taken over by another Hiranandani group entity through Debt Recovery Tribunal (DRT) proceedings.

Notably, sources have told news agency PTI that the recent questioning by the Enforcement Directorate was not linked to another FEMA probe being conducted against Trinamool Congress leader Mahua Moitra, who was expelled as a Lok Sabha MP in December last year.

BJP MP Nishikant Dubey had leveled allegations against Moitra, claiming that her inquiries in the Lok Sabha were orchestrated by Darshan Hiranandani to target the Adani Group and Prime Minister Narendra Modi in return for gifts.

The Trinamool leader, however, refuted the allegations and denied any wrongdoing, claiming that she was being targeted for raising questions about the deals of the Adani Group.

Published By:

Sahil Sinha

Published On:

Mar 4, 2024

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