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Kidney racket: Tax raids at doctor's Chennai house
October, 15th 2007
Income-Tax officials raided the house and clinic of Dr Pallani Ravichandran in Chennai in connection with the international kidney transplant racket.

The Mumbai Crime Branch arrested Dr Ravichandran on Tuesday, along with four of his agents and sub-agents who were allegedly "arranging" donors from various parts of the country and nearby South Asian countries.

The doctor had allegedly been conducting illegal transplants in Chennai's Bharati Raja Hospital and New Bharati Raza Hospital for five years.

On Friday, a team of Income-Tax officials raided Dr Ravichandran's house at Mugalivakkam and the nephrology ward at St Thomas Mount Hospital in Chennai and sealed both places.

The doctor's nephrology unit, including dialysis, operated out of St Thomas, Mount Hospital.

Police sources said Dr Ravichandran has three bungalows and three farmhouses in Chennai. The doctor had also rented flats and bungalows in Chennai to house donors and recipients. Investigating officials said that a separate bungalow or flat was earmarked for each state. The recipients were kept in bungalows while the donors, who mostly constituted of poor people, were kept in flats.

"Documents of the surgeries performed and other crucial documents have been recovered from his house and clinic," said police sources.

The doctor had appointed agents and sub-agents who used to get needy and uneducated donors from across the country and neighbouring countries such as Sri Lanka, Nepal and Myanmar.

"We are working with all agencies in tandem to pin down the culprit. We had informed the Income Tax authorities and appropriate action has been taken by them," said Joint Commissioner of Police (Crime) Rakesh Maria.

The doctor would charge anything between Rs 10 lakh and Rs 20 lakh from his affluent recipients from India, Gulf countries, Malaysia and Mauritius.

Crime Branch officials said Dr Ravichandran had been operating the racket since 1996 and would have amassed over Rs 100 crore.
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