By: Shubham Ghosh
India’s Enforcement Directorate (ED) probe agency on Friday (24) seized assets worth Rs 305.84 crore (£30.8 million) of popular Kerala- based jewellery retailer Joyalukkas, days after five of the company’s premises were raided by the former.
The ED accused the company of violating provisions of the Foreign Exchange Management Act (FEMA), which looks to consolidate and amend the law relating to foreign exchange.
According to reports, the case pertains to a huge quantity of cash transferred to Dubai from India through hawala channels (informal value transfer system outside traditional banking channels) and subsequently invested in Joyalukkas Jewellery LLC in the UAE city which is fully owned by Joy Alukkas Verghese.
It was also reported that the company had withdrawn its initial public offering (IPO) worth Rs 2,300 crore (£232 million) on Tuesday (21) saying it required more time to incorporate notable changes to its financial results.
The assets attached include 33 immovable properties valued at Rs 81.54 crore (£8.2 million) consisting of land and a residential building in Thrissur in Kerala. The ED also seized three bank accounts valued at Rs 9.22 lakh (£9,300), as many fixed deposits valued at Rs 5.58 crore (£562,865) and Joyalukkas’ shares worth Rs 217.81 crore (£21.9 million).
On Tuesday, Joyalukkas chief executive officer Baby George told Reuters that the company planned to refile its IPO documents “at the earliest, subject to market conditions”.