Indian investigators are reportedly intensifying efforts to reinitiate a probe into the Adani Group for alleged overvaluation of coal imports.
What Happened: The Directorate of Revenue Intelligence is seeking approval from the Supreme Court to collect crucial evidence from Singapore, a step previously obstructed by Adani through legal challenges in India and Singapore, Reuters reported, citing legal documents.
The agency has been pursuing transaction documents related to Adani’s coal dealings since 2016, suspecting inflated billing through its Singapore unit, Adani Global Pte, for shipments from Indonesian suppliers. The investigation, amid wider scrutiny of Adani, is part of a long-standing dispute, with Adani denying wrongdoing.
In an October 9 filing, the revenue intelligence agency urged the Supreme Court to overturn a lower court order that allowed Adani to prevent evidence collection in Singapore. Though Adani Group has raised questions about how the information was acquired, the agency contends that it followed due process in obtaining approval for seeking information from Singapore under a mutual legal assistance treaty.
Adani Group claims full cooperation, providing details and documents over four years ago without subsequent objections from investigators. This renewed effort coincides with increased regulatory scrutiny over Adani.
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Why it Matters: The revenue agency began investigating Adani’s coal imports in 2014, alleging overinvoicing to funnel funds to tax havens and inflate power prices in India. If the Supreme Court approves evidence collection, it would require an order from Singapore’s Court of Appeal for material release, potentially establishing a financial trail in the case.
Adani’s legal battles and the broader regulatory investigation follow Hindenburg Research’s accusations of financial fraud against the conglomerate, triggering a substantial stock drop.
This renewed focus on Adani’s coal imports is part of a broader investigation into 40 companies, with the revenue agency alleging overinvoicing by several firms in connection with Indonesian coal shipments. The agency contends that Adani’s coal imports involved grossly overstated values, potentially siphoning off funds to tax havens and impacting power prices in India.
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