Vivo India directors Zhengshen Ou and Zhang Jie left the country last year and now the Enforcement Directorate (ED) has intensified raids on a money laundering investigation against Chinese smartphone manufacturer Vivo and related firms.
Vivo India directors Zhengshen Ou and Zhang Jie have allegedly fled India last year and now the Enforcement Directorate (ED) has intensified its investigation against the Chinese firm. The agency raided at least 44 locations in Uttar Pradesh, Madhya Pradesh, Bihar, Meghalaya, and southern states, on Tuesday in connection with the Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA), 2002.
The federal agency filed a money laundering case after becoming cognizant of a recent FIR by the Delhi Police’s Economic Offenses Wing against a distributor of the agency located in Jammu and Kashmir, which claimed that a few Chinese shareholders in that company had forged their identity documents.
The action is being seen as a part of the Central Government’s intense efforts to tighten checks on Chinese entities and the continued crackdown on such firms and their sister concerns that are allegedly indulged in serious financial crimes like money laundering and tax evasions while operating here.
The ED suspects that this alleged forgery was done to hide some of the “proceeds of crime” from Indian tax and enforcement authorities by utilizing shell or paper firms to launder illegally obtained funds.
“The essence of China-India economic and trade cooperation is for mutual benefit and win-win results. The bilateral trade volume between China and India will reach a historical record of over 100 billion USD in 2021, which reflects the huge potential and broad prospect of economic and trade cooperation between our two countries,” a Chinese Embassy spokesperson said.
They also said that China wishes the Indian side to investigate and enforce the law in compliance with laws and regulations, and effectively provide a fair, just and non-discriminatory business environment for Chinese enterprises to invest and operate in the country.
Earlier, the federal agency had passed an order of freezing Xiaomi India’s bank assets worth over Rs 5500 crores. The smartphone market leader has filed a writ petition challenging ED‘s order and the judgment of the case is passed to the Karnataka High Court today.