ED issues show cause notice to Byju Raveendran in FEMA violation case

The Enforcement Directorate on Tuesday said it had issued showcause notices to edtech firm Think & Learn Private Limited and Byju Raveendran over alleged violation of 9,362.35 crore under Foreign Exchange Management Act, 1999.

Byju Raveendran of Think and Learn Pvt. Ltd that runs edutech start-up Byju’s. (HT File)
Byju Raveendran of Think and Learn Pvt. Ltd that runs edutech start-up Byju’s. (HT File)

“Adjudicating Authority issues show cause notices to M/s. Think & Learn Private Limited and Byju Raveendran for violation involving an amount of Rs. 9362.35 Crore under FEMA, 1999,” the central agency posted on X.

The announcement by ED comes hours after Byju’s denied receiving any such notice over FEMA violations. “Byju’s unequivocally denies media reports that insinuate it has received a notice from the Enforcement Directorate. The company has not received any such communication from the Enforcement Directorate,” the edtech platform had said in a statement earlier on Tuesday.

What’s the case about?

In April this year, the ED had searched two business and one residential premise, including that of Byju’s registered company Think & Learn Pvt. Ltd. — under the provisions of the Foreign Exchange Management Act (FEMA).

Byju’s has been facing probe by the ED that claimed to have seized incriminating documents and digital data after searches. According to the agency, the company has not prepared its financial statements since 2020-21 fiscal and has not got the accounts, audited which is mandatory.

ED said the searches were carried out on the basis of complaints received by private people, alleging that edtech founder Raveendranwas issued “several” summons but he remained “evasive and never appeared”.

The searches found that the company received foreign direct investment (FDI) to the tune of about 28,000 crore during 2011-2023.

“The company also remitted about 9,754 crore to various foreign jurisdictions during the same period in the name of overseas direct investment,” the ED had said.

According to the ED, Byju’s booked around 944 crore in the name of advertisement and marketing expenses including the amount remitted to foreign jurisdiction.

The company earlier this month reported narrowing of operational losses in core business to 2,253 crore for the 2021-22 fiscal.

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