The preventive wing of Kutch’s Central Goods and Services Tax (CGST) on Tuesday busted a nationwide racket of usurping input tax credit (ITC) to the tune of Rs 98 crore without actually carrying out any transaction by issuing bogus invoices to traders across the country. The CGST sleuths arrested 38-year-old businessman Gurkamal Singh, a native of Punjab, living in Adipur town of Kutch, who had issued fake invoices worth Rs 531 crore to nearly 700 traders all over the country who claimed Rs 98 crore in ITC without actual transaction of goods. Singh was sent to judicial custody till February 5 by chief judicial magistrate, Gandhidham. In an statement, CGST said that Singh owned a firm named Preet Enterprise but he had also taken registration of 17 other firms with GST numbers using personal details and KYC documents of various individuals. He was paying a lump sum amount to those persons whose documents he used to get the GST numbers. It was revealed that of the 17 firms, many had shut their businesses and others had fake addresses Singh had opened bank accounts in the name of all these 18 firms and was himself operating all these accounts.
According to officers, Singh used to issue fake invoice without actual supply of goods and pass on illegal ITC to the receivers of the bills. A senior officer told TOI “Singh had established a pan-India network through agents and issued bills to the various traders. Primary investigation revealed that there are 700 such traders who had purchased bills from Singh. The receiver had reduced his tax liability using the bills issued by Singh, who issued bills of various commodities under GST.” The investigations were launched based on a specific information and officials found no actual goods were transported against the bills issued. “ In Gandhidham, we searched premises of those traders who had purchased invoices from Singh and during interrogation, many admitted that they had purchased only invoices from Singh. Officials said as investigation progress, they will stumble on details of more fake firms and persons involved in issuing fake invoices without the actual movement of the goods. More arrests are also expected.