Niranjan Hiranandani Questioned By ED For Over 10 Hours In FEMA Violation Probe

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Builder and businessman Niranjan Hiranandani of real estate major Hiranandani Group on Monday appeared before the officials of the Enforcement Directorate (ED) at the agency’s Ballard Estate office to record his statement regarding a Foreign Exchange Management Act (FEMA) violations case. He was questioned by the ED for more than 10 hours before being released. The agency officials are questioning him in connection with the case.

Niranjan Hiranandani said after release that, “I am cooperating with the agencies. The case is 15 years old. We have been cooperating with the agency and will continue to do so. We have answered the questions multiple times; it’s related to FDI, and there’s nothing new to the case. We were happy to answer; there were no new issues raised. It’s been seen maybe 42 times; today is the 43rd time we have been called. If the violation was there, so you mean to say it was not seen 41 times? Whenever an issue is raised by any agency, I am very happy to cooperate because it’s their responsibility.”

The central agency conducted searches last month on the premises of the Hiranandani Group in and around Mumbai. Following the searches, the agency summoned Hiranandani and his son Darshan for questioning.

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Hiranandani had earlier skipped the summon citing health concerns for his inability to appear before the agency, while Darshan had requested the agency to give him some time to join the probe.

It is alleged that investments of more than ₹400 crores, received in the form of Foreign Direct Investments (FDIs) in Hiranandani Group companies with real estate projects in Panvel and Chennai, were improperly routed. The agency indicated that the utilization of this amount did not comply with prescribed government guidelines. The ED recovered several documents related to the company’s transactions during the search. However, several documents linked to the Panvel and Chennai FDI-related FEMA cases were found to be missing which was also submitted by the Hiranandani group.

Official Statement From Hiranandani Group

The official spokesperson of Hiranandani Group stated, “The company representative will remain fully cooperative in submitting required documents as was done previously multiple times and will appear when needed.

According to the ED investigation, it was found that the Hiranandanis had set up at least 25 companies and a trust in the British Virgin Islands between 2006 and 2008.

Hiranandani and his family members were the alleged beneficiaries of the offshore trust, which had accumulated assets of more than $60 million, agency sources said.

The group was also named in the Pandora Papers.

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This story originally appeared in the Free Press Journal and is published here under a mutual content-sharing agreement.

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Posted In: GovernmentRegulationsReal EstateHiranandani GroupNiranjan Hiranandani