The India Enforcement Directorate or ED had already carried out attacks on Oppo and Xiaomi. Now it is Vivo that is under ED’s scrutiny.
ED raided 44 locations in northern India of Vivo and its distributors under the Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA). Economic Times reports (opens in new tab) that the company was under investigation by the CBI (Central Bureau of Investigation), which subsequently passed the case to the ED.
Times of India reports (opens in new tab) that the investigation is based on the FIR registered by the Delhi Police against the company’s distributor in Jammu and Kashmir regarding falsification of documents relating to the identity of some Chinese citizens. They also reported that, according to ED sources, Chinese brands are shipping to China, overspending on software and consulting services, and evading taxes in India.
Another report quoted an ED official as saying, “We have come across many shell companies being operated in India by the Chinese company. All of them are being used to launder money.”
“Vivo is cooperating with the authorities to provide all necessary information. As a responsible company, we are committed to being in full compliance with the law.” said a spokesperson for Vivo. Vivo has not released a public statement about the attacks so far.
Not the first brand to be analyzed
It is true that the government has been chasing Chinese companies for some time. Xiaomi, Oppo and OnePlus have come under scrutiny from various agencies over the past year. And with Xiaomi, your assets are worth more than Rs. 5,500 Frozen Crores.
Xiaomi claimed to have done nothing wrong at the time and released a statement saying the royalty payments were legitimate. And it is intended for the technologies and licensed IPs that are used in the Indian versions of the products.
ED is not the only agency investigating Chinese companies. The IT department also carried out attacks on various Xiaomi, Oppo, OnePlus locations in 2021.