Thank you so much for your replies. They are helping me now as I am reading the 'Show Cause Notice' again & again. Broadly, the facts revolve around the 4 points stated by me earlier. Still, there is more to the story. At present, we have not received the complete set of the 'Relied Upon Documents' in the absence of which, I am not able to properly cross-check the correctness of the allegations in the notice. These documents will come soon. I'll definitely share more with all of you asap.
Large number of parties (all are our clients) have been targeted in this case and a huge amount has been demanded as a total of duty and penalty. Primarily, parties are manufacturing companies (including, few of their employees), owner of these companies (he resigned long ago; allegation of hiding behind corporate veil), so-called 'dummy' directors of these companies, the Company Secretary of these companies, raw material suppliers, suppliers of packing materials, transporters, carrying & forwarding agents, railway booking agents, distributors, dealers etc. Searches and seizures took place at places like factory premises, gates of factories, railway stations, premises of dealers etc.
At various railway stations, bags of 'branded finished goods' involved were found. On these bags and in the forwarding notes kept by the helpers, descripttion of the stuff being transported contained names of various 'raw materials' and not the 'brand' or the 'finished goods' (ready to be sold and kept inside the bags).
Duty demanded covers the period between 2004-08. Searches & seizures took place in 2007 & 2008. Allegation against the owner of the manufacturing companies is that he was a director of these companies until 2002. After resigning in that year, he appointed few loyal employees as directors. According to the notice, statements of these 'dummy' directors indicate that the owner continued to supervise everything related to the defaulting companies.
As was told to us by our clients (all parties) who are at the receiving end, they were under pressure (from the investigating officers) to give few adverse written statements though they tried to deny orally. To some extent, parties were asked to write few suppositions.
Please think about all these points & revert asap.