Chennai: The Enforcement Directorate (ED) has initiated a sweeping crackdown on the sand mafia in Tamil Nadu, conducting extensive raids at more than 25 locations nationwide. These targeted operations included sand mining sites, sales depots, and the offices and residences of sand mining contractors. The areas covered by these raids encompassed prominent locations such as Vellore, Chennai, Dindigul, Tiruchi, Karur, Pudukottai, and others.
Allegations of money laundering and significant tax evasion within the sand mining industry prompted the ED’s active involvement in investigating the sand mining scam. It has come to light that despite the official online sale of sand, complete with electronic receipts issued at the sand mining depots, substantial offline sales of sand were occurring without consistent record-keeping. The investigative agency is now scrutinizing whether the appropriate taxes were deposited into government accounts by the e-bills issued.
The individuals targeted in these raids include industrialists S Ramachandran and Dindigul Rathinam, who hold licenses for sand mining operations, a chartered accountant and a sand mining contractor by the name of Rathinam. These individuals have come under the ED’s scrutiny as part of its ongoing efforts to unearth any financial irregularities and potential wrongdoing within the sand mining sector.
The raids conducted by the ED underscore the authorities’ commitment to addressing and rectifying any unlawful activities associated with sand mining, aiming to ensure transparency and compliance within this industry, which holds significant economic importance in Tamil Nadu.