The intelligence wing of the Indian Ministry of Finance, the Directorate of Revenue Intelligence (DRI), has raised allegations that a firm linked to Adani’s infrastructure projects is owned by a Chinese national.
Allegations have been made by an Indian government investigative agency against part of the Adani Group. The companies concerned have been accused of ‘over-invoicing’, a practice in which goods are routed through an intermediary that artificially infates the price in order to create an improper advantage for the main company concerned. The alleged over-invoicing of imported equipment was said to have been undertaken by three companies: Adani Power Maharashtra Limited (APML), Adani Power Rajasthan Limited (APRL) and Maharashtra Eastern Grid Power Transmission Company Limited (MEGPTCL).
The allegations have been made by the Ministry of Finance’s Directorate of Revenue Intelligence (DRI), the intelligence wing of the Ministry. They are outlined in a show-cause notice sent by the DRI to various Adani Group companies and to Vinod Adani, older brother of Gautam Adani. It alleges that an entity named Electrogen Infra FZE (EIF), registered in the United Arab Emirates and controlled by Vinod Adani, acted as an intermediary invoicing agent for PMC Projects (India) Private Limited (PMC) and MEGPTCL while importing machinery for installing electricity transmission lines. The DRI alleged that, while the consignment of equipment came directly to PMC and MEGPTCL from original equipment manufacturers in China and South Korea, EIF, the intermediary, inflated the amounts shown in invoices to PMC and MEGPTCL by up to 400% more than the amounts in the invoices submitted by the actual suppliers to EIF.
The Hindenburg Research report on the Adani Group, published on 24 January 2023, which made explosive allegations about the group’s practices, discussed PMC’s activities in some detail. In this article, AdaniWatch unearths the connection between PMC and the Adani Group and goes beyond the findings of Hindenburg Research.
PMC was incorporated on 3 May 2005 in Ahmedabad as a 100% subsidiary of Project Monitoring and Construction Limited (PM&CL), a private company registered in Mauritius. PM&CL held 9999 shares in PMC, while Malay Mahadevia held a single share.
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A dentist by profession, Mahadevia, the first director of PMC, is a close friend and professional associate of Gautam Adani. He has been associated with the Adani Group from the early-1990s. He has served on the boards of directors of several group companies. On 31 January 2023, Mahadevia was on the board of 12 Adani Group companies and GSPC LNG Ltd, a Gujarat government company in which the Adani group holds a 5.46% stake. An article published in June 2022 in The Economic Times said that ‘Mahadevia is, in many ways, Adani’s alter-ego. He’s still perceived to be Adani’s trusted right-hand man’.
An FIR by CBI relating to the alleged conspiracy to rig the coal import tender floated by APGENCO was lodged in India’s capital, New Delhi, which implied Adani’s connection to China in the coal-procurement scam.
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