Five days after the blockbuster wedding of his daughter that raised national eyebrows, mining baron G Janardhan Reddy has come under the scanner of the IT department, which on Monday cracked the whip asking him to explain the expenditure for it and inspected offices of his firms.
The department has served a "questionnaire" on Reddy in respect of the expenditure incurred during marriage functions of Bramhani with Hyderabad businessman Rajeev Reddy and asked him to reply to it on or before November 25, officials said.
The department sleuths, comprising a five-member team pored over the records at the Obulapuram Mining Company and Associated Mining Company owned by Reddy and his family in his hometown of Ballari, they said. Reddy, who was in Hyderabad, was back in Ballari, as the IT department action came amid outcry over the five-day wedding against the backdrop of lavish settings that stirred a huge row over its timing when people are reeling under cash crunch after demonetisation of high value currencies.
In Bengaluru, the Income Tax department conducted surveys on at least 10 locations of high-end event management firms, catering and multi-media service providers who were engaged for the extravagant wedding. Officials said the tax men visited seven locations here and three in Hyderabad of the event management companies which were given contracts for the wedding.
They said the department, after receiving reports of high spending for the event, initiated the action and is checking the account books, payment receipts and contract portfolios of these firms, who specialise in creating special ambience and customised display for high-end spending clientele during their special events like weddings.
In the three-page questionnaire served by the department, Reddy has been asked to furnish the details about the various functions conducted pre-marriage and post-marriage. The questionnaire has sought details on the programmes managed by the event management and the expenditure incurred or likely to be incurred on various components such as catering, flowers, wedding decorations, entertainment and music, transport, accommodation, security, venue and photography and videography, officials said.
Reddy has also been asked to give details of the jewellery, dress materials, personal wear and other valuable purchases made by him, his family members and close relatives for the wedding, including the source for them.
The IT department has sought details regarding vendors The IT department has sought details regarding vendors and from where the purchases were made, officials said, adding, information of all the bank accounts, including credit/debit cards for which the payment has been made had been asked. According to the questionnaire, Reddy has to explain the source, date of payment and details of persons who received the payment if cash had been paid.
The department has said Reddy has to also explain any other incidental expenditure made in cash/banking or kind and provide details of the return gifts and valuables distributed to the guests along with their value and source for the same.
The lavishness of the wedding was mirrored in huge sets replicating Vijaya Vitthala temple of Hampi, the seat of the glorious erstwhile Vijayanagara empire, and Tirumala Tirupati temple were erected at the venue, along with replicas of the homes of both the bride and groom. Pre-wedding events too were on par in extravagance with artistes and dancers from different parts, including Samba dancers from Brazil, being part of the grandiose event.
Reddy, once considered mighty along with his brothers in the mine-rich Ballari district before his fall, is presently on bail, which the Supreme Court granted in January last year after he spent about 40 months in jail in connection with alleged illegal mining.