Indore (Madhya Pradesh): After three years of legal wrangling, the Khandwa magistrate court has ordered that over Rs 2.59 crore being taken from one city to another by train under the hawala business be handed over to the Income-Tax department (ITD). The amount was being carried by four passengers in the Mahanagari Express and had been seized by the railway police near Khandwa. Since then, this amount had been kept with the railway police.
Staking his claim to the amount, a businessman from Ahmedabad had applied to the court to hand it over to him. Rejecting the appeal, the court ordered that the amount be handed over to the Income-Tax department.
In March 2019, the Khandwa GRP had seized Rs 2.59 crore from Akshay Kundnani, Devesh Kundnani, Sanjay Jatav and Narayan Ahuja. In April 2019, the Income-Tax department issued its warrant of authorization and sent the officers of the department to Khandwa to collect this amount.
Meanwhile, Kamlesh Shah, a businessman from Ahmedabad, filed an application on behalf of his wife, Neena Shah, before the special railway magistrate, Khandwa, and staked his claim to the said amount. Applicant Neena Shah said that she was in a business related to agricultural produce. So, she had immediate cash in hand of Rs 18 crore. She gave this amount to one of her employees Mehul Patel, from whom four people had looted the amount on the train. These four are the same people from whom the Khandwa GRP had seized this amount. Ajay Kakani, senior advocate of the Income-Tax department told the court that Neena Shah had nothing to do with the whole episode. She was a complete outsider in the matter. Mehul Patel, who Neena Shah said was her employee, had never seen such an amount, nor had he gone out of Ahmedabad.
The special railway magistrate, after hearing the arguments, rejected the application of Neena Shah on January 30, 2020. Neena challenged the order before the additional sessions judge of Khandwa. So, the amount could not be transferred to the Income-Tax department and the transfer was stayed. After two years and eight months, the amount is now being handed over to the Income-Tax department