The Enforcement Directorate on Friday said that it has taken possession of 100 per cent shares of M.G.M. Maran and M.G.M. Anand in four MGM group of companies in India in connection with a money laundering case.
The ED in a statement said that it has taken possession of 100 per cent shares of Maran and Anand in four Chennai-based group companies — Southern Agrifurane Industries Private Ltd, Anand Transport Private Ltd, MGM Entertainment Pvt Ltd, MGM Diamond Beach Resorts Pvt as well as 52,39,959 equity shares (representing 3.31 per cent) of Maran in Tamilnad Mercantile Bank Ltd (TMBL) (recently listed on BSE) under the provisions of Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA), 2002.
The probe agency said that Maran was the chairman of Tamilnad Mercantile Bank Ltd. (TMBL) in 2007, when, he along with other directors of the TMBL, had facilitated a deal of sale of 23.60 per cent shares of TMB from Indian shareholders to unauthorised overseas persons.
It was also found that Maran acquired undisclosed foreign investments of Rs 293.91 crore outside India during the same period.
These investments were without the approval of the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) as well as from unexplained and dubious sources.
“ED probe revealed that Maran, soon after being subjected to ED investigation, started removing his wealth to outside India with sole objective to keep the same out of the reach of Indian law enforcement agencies in the garb of Overseas Direct Investments (ODI) and in pursuance of the same had got Cyprus citizenship in 2016,” the ED said.
The ED then on December 23, 2022 attached proceeds of crime under PMLA as equivalent value in the form of entire shareholding of both Maran and Anand in all prominent MGM Group of companies in India, lands and buildings in ‘Southern Agrifurane Industries Pvt Ltd’ as well as shareholding of Maran in TMBL being 3.31 per cent.
“Subsequently, the order was confirmed by the Adjudicating Authority on June 14 this year. ED has invoked the provisions of Section 8(4)of PMLA and taken the possession of the confirmed attached properties vide notice on Thursday,” the ED added.