Income Tax officials, probing alleged financial irregularities in cash-rich IPL, on Wednesday raided the offices of the Kolkata Knight Riders and Cricket Association of Bengal (CAB). “The income tax officials are here looking for papers relating to IPL. We are cooperating with them,” CAB president Jagmohan Dalmiya’s personal assistant said.
A seven-member I-T team raided the office of KKR and CAB. Dalmiya was scheduled to hold a press conference relating to IPL in the evening but it was postponed, he said.
Summons were issued to the BCCI by the Income Tax authorities to furnish complete details of all eight original Indian Premier League franchises.
The I-T authorities are investigating the entire IPL structure, which has become a huge revenue-earning entity for the BCCI, since its inception in 2008.
There are five Indian Revenue Service officials in the raid team.
The team leader said that “it is part of a raid. Raids are done in two ways, either you search or conduct a survey. We are doing a survey here. We have been asked to conduct a survey here.
“Though Red Chilles Entertainment is headquartered in Mumbai, this is their home venue where seven IPL matches were played. There were many transactions and several papers and documents are lying here,” he said.
Pointing out that the last KKR match was played at the Eden Gardens on April 19, the official said “we will complete the work no matter how long it takes and until we are satisfied.”
The Kolkata Knight Riders’ none-too-impressive campaign in the IPL has ended but not their woes. The team is now facing a two-pronged investigation — one from the Income Tax Department and another from the economic offence wings of the West Bengal finance and revenue department and the Kolkata Police.
The probes will add to the woes of team. Ownership issue has been a perennial problem.
On Wednesday, a team of I-T officials raided the office of the Cricket Association of Bengal (CAB) in order to get details of the shareholding pattern in KKR.
Highly placed I-T officials told DNA that the raid was being conducted to crosscheck two factors — whether KKR has any direct or indirect link in alleged IPL money laundering and also whether there is any other irregularity. “We are examining details of the KKR’s expenditure since 2008. At the same, we will also be examining the details of the financial transactions between KKR and CAB during that period,” I-T officials said.
Another team of I-T officials also raided Shah Rukh Khan’s Red Chillies Entertainment Pvt Ltd. It is learnt that the I-T department seized some important documents. The officials also questioned CAB president Jagmohan Dalmiya.
The state government too has decided to start an investigation against KKR for evading entertainment tax by selling tickets of IPL matches at Eden Gardens at prices much higher than what was printed on tickets. State finance minister Asim Dasgupta said foul play had been detected in tickets for super-hospitality box at Eden Gardens.