Bengaluru, Sep 21 Income Tax Department sleuths on Thursday searched the business and residential premises of Cafe Coffee Day retail chain founder-owner V.G. Siddhartha, son-in-law of former Karnataka Chief Minister S.M. Krishna, in Bengaluru and other places in the state for alleged tax evasion, said a senior official. "Directorate Revenue (Intelligence) officials are conducting simultaneous search and seizure operation to ascertain undisclosed income and tax evasion, if any, under section 132 of the Income Tax Act 1961 in the offices and residence of a businessman who owns Coffee Day retail outlets across the country," the tax official told IANS here. The raids, which began at 8 a.m., were underway at the corporate office of Amalgamated Bean Coffee (ABC) Trading Company, which runs the coffee chain, in central Bengaluru, its branches at Chikkamagaluru, Mudigere and Sakelespur in the state and its owner's house in the city's upscale suburb. Clarifying that the raids had nothing to do with the political links of the owner's relative, the official said the businessman happens to be the son-in-law of a prominent politician in the state. "The raid on the businessman is for evidence on information gathered during the course of investigation and is independent of his relationship with a politician," added the official on the condition of anonymity.
Siddhartha is the elder son-in-law of Krishna, a former External Affairs Minister of the country from 2009-12. He was the Chief Minister from 1999 to 2004. He was also Maharashtra Governor from 2004 to 2008. The 85-year-old veteran politician joined the BJP on March 22 in New Delhi after resigning from the Congress on January 29 this year, severing his four-decade-old association with the grand old party.