Lucknow, Aug 21: Becoming a millionaire by selling kachoris can be a reality in India if one goes by the real-life story of Mukesh Kumar of Aligarh who recently grabbed headlines in the national media. Based on a complaint received from Liuchow Revenue Intelligence Department the officials of the special investigating branch (SIB) of commercial tax conducted a raid on his shop and found that Mukesh Kumar who sells kachoris for a living, has an annual turnover of 60 to 70 lakhs and that makes him a millionaire businessman.
He has evaded paying GST as he has not registered his business despite his income coming under the ambit of GST Act and therefore he was slapped with a notice by the GST authorities recently and that brought the family into limelight.
The 4ftx4 ft humble-looking tiny kachori shop “Mukesh Kachoriwala” located near Seema Talkies in Aligarh was originally taken on rent by Mukesh’s father Makhan Lal about 12 years ago. Mukesh has been running this roadside shop for the last 10 years by selling kachoris and samosas. As per the details given by SIB Mukesh has confessed to having an annual turnover of 60 to 70 lakhs. The previous limit for paying GST was Rs. 20 lakhs was revised in April 2019. As per new rules those having an annual turnover of Rs. 40 lakh and above are required to get themselves registered under GST and they are liable to pay 5 % GST which is levied on food items.
It is not just the news of his evading the tax that grabbed media attention. GST officials who conducted the raid were in for a shock when they found that he is living in a 225 sq ft dilapidated house situated in a narrow road that is littered with trash strewn around despite being a millionaire.
The road leading to his house is so small it is said that even three people may not be able to stand side by side together. Even his small house is devoid of basic necessities let alone luxuries and that has baffled everyone including those who read his story in the national media.
According to the Special Investigating Branch officials who slapped a notice on him for GST tax evasion the daily income of Mukesh Kumar from the Kachori business was estimated to be Rs 15,000- 20,000 per day and that brings him within the ambit of GST tax. Mukesh claims that he has a daily business turnover of only Rs. 2000 to Rs. 3000/-, which doesn’t sound convincing for many reasons.
Before conducting the raid the officials did reconnaissance for about 5 to six days by observing the footfall at the kachori shop both during normal and peak hours. They also took into consideration other aspects like the quantity of dough and other ingredients used for making Kachoris, before serving the notice. Officials claimed that the shopkeeper himself confessed of using 10 kg of curd, 15 liters of refined oil on a daily basis and also of using a gas cylinder worth Rs. 1800/- that lasts for three days in addition to using condiments worth Rs. 1500/- a day.
He was also paying Rs. 300 a day to two of his employees and that brings his daily expenses to about Rs. 6000 to 7000 per day. The family pays a rent of Rs. 300 for the kachori shop and has rented two additional rooms by paying a rent of Rs. 1200 per month to use as store rooms. So it is simple arithmetic that his expenses cannot be more than his income unless he continued his business despite incurring loss of thousands of rupees everyday all these years. Based on Mukesh’s confession and other details the officials found during the search the officials estimate his business to be to the tune of 60 to 70 lakhs annually. However, Makhan Lal has a different tale to narrate. He says the raid by SIB officials is the result of a conspiracy hatched by his enemy. He claimed that his daughter-in-law had a fight with a powerful man and he wants to take revenge on the family my making dubious allegations.
Makhan Lal also says that his three sons Mukesh Kumar (40), Bhagawan Das (35) and Bunty (29) help him in his business and they have their own homes which he claims are equally small sans basic luxuries.
The entire incident has brought publicity, though negative to “Mukesh Kachoriwala” eatery. But the family is taking the entire episode on its strides on a positive note saying it would make way for more business to them in the coming days and that they would be having the last laugh.
The moral of this incident is: millionaires need not roam in flashy cars or live in plush bungalows, soaking in luxury. It is also a lesson for all not to underrate simpletons especially those who sell kachoris, pakoras or samosa for a living.