ED seizes ₹8.6-cr assets of DMK MP for FEMA breach

Our Bureau Chennai | Updated on October 16, 2020 Published on October 16, 2020

The Enforcement Directorate (ED) has seized ₹8.6 crore of assets belonging to DMK Member of Parliament Gautham Sigamani, for allegedly contravening foreign exchange regulations.

Sigamani, who represents Kallakurichi constituency, is the son of DMK General Secretary K Ponmudi.

A press release from the ED said, investigations revealed that in March 2008 Sigamani made overseas investment of $100,000 (₹41.57 lakh) to acquire 2.45 lakh shares of PT Excel Megindo, Jakarta, and $55,000 (₹22.86 lakh) in Universal Business Ventures, UAE, without RBI approval.

He failed to repatriate profits amounting to ₹7.05 crore earned from Universal Business from 2008-09 to 2012-13 and continued to hold the same abroad till date in contravention of FEMA. He also failed to repatriate the balance amount lying in the bank account of Universal Business to the tune of 6.04 lakh dirhams (₹90.20 lakh) as on December 31, 2012 and continues to hold the same abroad till date.

As per FEMA, if any foreign exchange, foreign security or any immovable property situated outside India is suspected to be held in contravention of FEMA, the ED is empowered to seize the equivalent in assets situated within India.

Accordingly, immovable properties in the form of agricultural lands, commercial and residential buildings in Tamil Nadu and balances in bank accounts and shares totalling to ₹8.6 crores held by Sigamani have been seized. Further investigation is in progress, it said.

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Published on October 16, 2020
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