After constant investigations, the CBI found that Indian Revenue Services (IRS) officer and Additional Commissioner of Customs and GST, Sachin Sawant, has amassed huge assets in his name, in the names of his wife, father and mother and incurred huge expenditure, disproportionate to the tune of Rs. 2.45 crore to their legal sources of income. The agency also suspects that a BMW car and another vehicle owned by Sawant through benamidars. The ED joined the probe to trace the money trail. Sachin Sawant, an Indian Revenue Services (IRS) officer and Additional Commissioner of Customs and GST, has come under scrutiny following his arrest by the Enforcement Directorate (ED) in connection with a corruption and disproportionate assets case. Sawant’s arrest has raised questions about his background and alleged involvement in illicit activities.
Sawant, a member of the 2008 batch of IRS officers, has had a different career within the government. He served as the deputy director of the ED in Mumbai Zone 2 between 2017 and 2019, during which time he was responsible for overseeing financial investigations and enforcing laws against money laundering and economic offenses. In 2020, Sawant resumed as officer on special duty to a senior minister in the Maha Vikas Aghadi Government government, further coagulating his position within the government hierarchy. However, his career took a different turn when he joined the Goods and Services Tax (GST) department in Lucknow.
The Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) initiated a disproportionate assets case against him based on a corruption complaint. The investigation revealed a significant increase in the assets of the Sawant family from Rs 1.4 lakh in 2011 to Rs 2.1 crore in 2022, raising suspicions about the source of these funds. The ED’s search operation at Sawant’s residences in Mumbai and Lucknow, as well as the homes of his relatives, resulted in his arrest. The probe uncovered a questionable transaction involving the purchase of a flat in Navi Mumbai. The flat was registered in the name of a company called Seven Hills Constrowell India, where Sawant’s father held a position as a director. It was discovered that funds for the purchase were routed through multiple loans, personal accounts, and current accounts belonging to Sawant’s family. Additionally, a substantial amount of cash, around Rs 1 crore, was allegedly involved in the acquisition.
Further investigations revealed that Seven Hills Constrowell India had its registered office in a modest chawl in Dadar (East), and the company filed only one income-tax return in 2018-19, indicating a negligible income and a loss of Rs 6,800. Curiously, the mobile number provided in the income-tax return was linked to Sawant himself. He was brought to Mumbai from Lucknow after his arrest, the sources said, adding that he will be produced before a court in Mumbai. When Sawant was posted as the deputy director of the ED’s Mumbai Zone 2 unit, he investigated a diamond trading company for illegally diverting and remitting over Rs 500 crore. One of the accused arrested in the case claimed Sawant demanded a bribe and went to the Central Bureau of Investigation, following which an FIR was registered. Now Sachin Sawant has been arrested and he is in Mumbai police custody.