Mumbai's billionaire family that declared Rs 2 lakh crore income absconding

Updated: Dec 07, 2016, 11:18 IST | Asif Rizvi |

One would assume that after declaring their Rs 2 lakh crore net worth in IDS, the Sayeds would be a well-known name in Bandra’s social circles, but even their neighbours haven’t seen them

This Mumbai family is so rich, it beggars belief. Even the finance ministry can’t digest their declaration of a net worth of Rs 2 lakh crore. This is 14 times more than the Rs 13,860 crore claimed by the now infamous Mahesh Shah from Ahmedabad. Stranger still, no one knows where the mystery family resides since the address they provided turned out to be false.

According to the society board at Jubilee Court in Bandra, flat No 4 belongs to R R Vaid. Pics/Poonam Bathija
According to the society board at Jubilee Court in Bandra, flat No 4 belongs to R R Vaid. Pics/Poonam Bathija

No one knows where to find Mumbai’s mystery millionaire family — nobody lives at the Bandra West address they provided in their declaration. But depend upon it, the Income Tax department will soon go on the hunt for the family of four — Abdul Sayed (declarant), Mohammed Sayed (son), Rukhsana Sayed (wife) and Noorjahan Sayed (sister).

All sorts of millionaires have been crawling out of the woodwork since the finance ministry announced its income declaration scheme (IDS), under which citizens can declare their black money and the government will convert it to white money — after deducting 45 per cent.

However, the finance ministry yesterday announced that they had rejected the income declarations by both Mahesh Shah and the Sayed family, because it just seems unbelievable that anyone can shore up so much wealth. To put things in perspective, the Sayed family has claimed a net worth of Rs 2 lakh crore (that’s 12 zeroes), the BMC’s budget for the entire year is just one-fifth of that (Rs 37,000 crore).

Commissioner of Income Tax Meenakshi Goswami and spokesperson for the Central Board of Direct Taxes (CBDT) said, “The family made the income tax disclosure at the I-T office in Mumbai and provided a Bandra address. This high-value declaration was found to be suspicious, so it has not been taken accepted on record."

Neighbours clueless
While Ahmedabad’s Mahesh Shah has already been questioned by Income Tax officials and media channels, the Sayed family might not be as easy to find.

The Sayeds listed their contact address as flat no. 4, on the ground floor of Jubilee Court, on Linking Road, Bandra (W), but mid-day paid a visit there and discovered that no one has lived there for several years.

In fact, neighbours aren’t even sure who owns the 2BHK flat. The 640 sq ft flat is estimated to worth Rs 2 crore and the building was constructed in 1960. One of the residents of the building, MH Mandani, said, “I don’t know who owns the flat. It was first occupied by RR Vaid some 20 years ago. There have been many transfers of the flats after that. We are not aware who owned it last.”

Pradeep, the owner of a shop in same building, said, “I remember there was a beauty parlour in the flat about a decade ago, after which one Mr Hingorani bought the house. As far as Mr Sayed is concerned, I am not sure whether someone of this name ever resided here. Most of the flats are unoccupied here, as the owners live somewhere else.”

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