Amrapali diverted funds to 250 dummy firms: Auditors tell SC

New Delhi: The Supreme Court on Wednesday directed the Amrapali Group to disclose the names of all the companies with which it had any kind of transactions after forensic auditors pointed out that there may be a web of more than 200-250 such firms where home buyers money was transferred. The two forensic auditors, appointed by the court to look into the affairs of Amrapali Group said besides 47 sister companies, they stumbled upon 31 companies whose names were never disclosed by the embattled real estate firm.

The court was also told that there may be a case of the Foreign Exchange Management Act (FEMA), as large amount of money was transferred to a multinational company based in Mauritius. It questioned Amarapali Group CFO Chander Wadhwa as to how a group company paid his Income Tax amounting to Rs 2 crore, when he was earning only Rs 50,000 per month. A bench of Justices Arun Mishra and U U Lalit said money of innocent buyers could not be misused like this and asked the Mauritius-based JP Morgan company to file its account statement with regard to the transaction with the Amrapali Group.

The counsel for J P Morgan said they had invested more than Rs 100 crore in the real estate business of Amrapali Group and they had a claim of Rs 168 crore from the reality firm. At the outset, forensic auditors Pawan Kumar Agarwal and Ravi Bhatia said besides the 47 sister companies declared by the Amrapali Group, they have initially found 23 companies and now another eight companies with which the reality firm had transactions. “We have no iota of doubt that not only promoters, Chief Financial Officer (CFO) and the internal auditors of the Amrapali Group were part of the syndicate.

Prima facie, we have found the relatives of promoters, CFO and internal auditors were directors in these companies, where the money was transferred,” Agarwal said. “Initially, we found 23 companies where transaction had taken place and now we have found eight more companies. We anticipate that there are more than 200-250 such companies, where the money was transferred, but their names have not been disclosed by the Amrapali Group till now,” he said. The court-appointed forensic auditor pointed out that in compliance with the earlier order of the court, the Amrapali Group had handed over 117 computers used by it, but 36 of them were not working and many were password-protected, which were not given to them.

The bench directed the group to disclose the passwords of these computers given to the forensic auditors within three days and mark which computer belonged to which company. “We understand everything what is happening. We are not saying anything at present but waiting for the proofs and disclosure of details. They may hide the information for say seven days but on the eighth day we will have the information, no matter what,” the bench said. The bench also asked the Amrapali Group to disclose the details of luxury cars owned by the company and their registration numbers after the forensic auditors flagged that a luxury car was given to the CFO.

(To receive our E-paper on whatsapp daily, please click here. We permit sharing of the paper's PDF on WhatsApp and other social media platforms.)

Free Press Journal