Kochi: The sales tax department is planning a massive drive against jewellers in the wake of attempts by gold ornament makers and traders to evade tax while buying the yellow metal from New Delhi. The drive is expected to include raids at gold-making centres in central Kerala and strict vigil at Nedumbassery airport where the gold arrives from New Delhi.
Sundar K., sales tax deputy commissioner who took charge at the Cochin unit on Monday, said the operations of jewellers would be examined thoroughly. “We will stop all attempts to evade tax. A special drive is being planned. But the modus operandi of the dealers and traders has to be studied before that,” he said.
There has been a huge flow of gold ornaments through the Kochi airport which is being brought without paying tax. The intelligence wing of the sales tax department had seized 2.645 kg of gold ornaments from Nedumbassery airport last week which were brought in after evading tax. The ornaments, worth `74 lakh, were being taken to an ornament-making centre in Thrissur.
According to sales tax sleuths, only those people with a corresponding licence are authorized to buy and trade in gold, but by paying the tax. Last week’s incident saw a licence-less culprit bringing the consignment from New Delhi.
He had also failed to declare the gold purchase. The gold was being transported in a luxury car to Thrissur. The sales tax officers who were present at the airport got suspicious of the movement of the man who had received the gold and raided the car....