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Over 8 lakh respond to income tax queries for large deposits after demonetisation

LiveMint logoLiveMint 10-03-2017 PTI

New Delhi: The income tax department has received responses from 8.38 lakh persons out of the 18 lakh SMS/email queries it had sent to 17.92 lakh people for suspicious deposits post demonetisation.

“More than 12 lakh responses have been received from 8.38 lakh distinct PANs/persons which are under verification,” minister of state for finance Santosh Kumar Gangwar said in a written reply in the Lok Sabha.

The tax profiles of 17.92 lakh people were “not in line” with the cash deposits made by them during the 50-day demonetisation period.

Under the Operation Clean Money launched on 31 January, the I-T department sought online response on source of cash deposited by these persons.

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The government had on 8 November 2016, demonetised Rs500 and Rs1,000 notes and asked holders of such currencies to deposit them in bank accounts by 30 December.

“In case explanation of source of cash is found justified, the verification is closed. The verification is also closed if the cash deposit is declared under the Pradhan Mantri Garib Kalyan Yojana,” Gangwar said.

He said an appropriate action in non-compliant cases is taken as per law, which includes searches, surveys, assessment of income, levy of taxes, penalties and filing of prosecution complaints in criminal courts.

In a separate reply to a question in the Lok Sabha, Gangwar said during 1 April 2014 to 31 December 2016, the I-T department conducted searches in 1,838 groups of assessees, seizing undisclosed assets worth Rs2,607 crore.

These assessees admitted to undisclosed income of Rs 33,210 crore. During the same period, the department conducted 14,472 surveys that resulted in detection of undisclosed income of Rs 31,929 crore. In the compliance window provided under the 2015 foreign black money law, 648 disclosures involving undisclosed foreign assets worth Rs 2,476 crore were made.

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Further, under the income declaration scheme 2016, the government has received 64,275 declarations with undisclosed income of Rs 65,250 crore.

To a query on the estimated amount of black money, Gangwar said, “There is no official estimation of quantum of black money within and outside the country.”

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