New Delhi: The Enforcement Directorate (ED) has sent a to Baba Ramdev's aide Balkrishna under Foreign Exchange Management Act (FEMA). The ED had registered a case against Balkrishna under the Prevention of Money Laundering Act on Wednesday.
According to the ED's initial investigations Balkrishna was involved in a Jharkhand-based company and is alleged to have violated FEMA guidelines. He allegedly travelled to over 25 countries on a fake passport including countries which are known tax havens.
The agency registered the case against Balkrishna acting on the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) FIR, which had charged him with violations of the Passport Act.
Sources said the ED suspects that Balkrishna, who has been looking after various trusts run by Ramdev, could have parked the alleged laundered money abroad using the forged passport as claimed by CBI.
"The case has been registered under section 4 of the Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA) and the investigations into Balkrishna's transactions abroad are now underway," sources said.
The ED may also move to arrest Balkrishna who walked out of jail on bail on August 17. He was sent to jail in July after he was arrested by CBI for allegedly submitting fake documents for obtaining Indian passport.
The CBI had registered a case of cheating and criminal conspiracy against Balkrishna on July 23 last year for allegedly procuring fake degree and violating Section 12 of Indian Passport Act by furnishing fake and forged High School and graduation certificates to the passport authorities for obtaining the document.
The CBI had filed a chargesheet in a special court in New Delhi against Balkrishna in the case.
The ED, which is probing Ramdev's trusts, for alleged contraventions of the forex rules is also set to begin penal proceeings in this case too.
The Revenue department has already begun a final tax assessment of the trusts associated with Ramdev after service and I-T officials recently conducted special probes on these enterprises for alleged tax evasion.
The I-T department, in May, has also slapped a notice of Rs 58 crore on the sale of the ayurvedic medicines by these trusts.
The Service Tax department has similarly raised a demand of about Rs 5 crore on the 'yog shivirs' run by Ramdev's trusts Ramdev, who has campaigned against black money in the country, heads an organisation that runs the trusts which manage the manufacture and sale of ayurvedic medicines in India and abroad.
The Service Tax department has already issued a notice to Patanjali Yoga Peeth for sale of entry coupons for yoga camps.
Thousands of people have participated in these camps conducted across the country and abroad.
The yoga guru had declared his business empire to be worth more than Rs 1,100 crore. The capital involving the four trusts run by him totalled Rs 426.19 crore while the expenditure incurred on them amounted to Rs 751.02 crore.
While the Divya Yoga Mandir trust has a capital of Rs 249.63 crore, Patanjali Yoga Peeth trust has Rs 164.80 crore, Bharat Swabhiman trust Rs 9.97 crore and Acharyakul Shiksha Sansthan Rs 1.79 crore - all totalling Rs 426.19 crore.
(With additional information from PTI)