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₹1.37 lakh crore of tax evasion detected over last 3 years

Criminal prosecutions have been launched in 2814 cases and 3893 persons have been arrested.

April 07, 2017 08:08 pm | Updated 08:11 pm IST - NEW DELHI

HYDERABAD (AP) -12-03-2012 - BL/ BUDGET RELATED PIC / STAND ALONE : -Will the ceiling on Income Tax go upor down in the Union Budget 2012-13 as a hoarding of a bank suggests in Hyderabad on Monday . -- PHOTO: P.V.SIVAKUMAR .

HYDERABAD (AP) -12-03-2012 - BL/ BUDGET RELATED PIC / STAND ALONE : -Will the ceiling on Income Tax go upor down in the Union Budget 2012-13 as a hoarding of a bank suggests in Hyderabad on Monday . -- PHOTO: P.V.SIVAKUMAR .

Law enforcement agencies have detected ₹1.37 lakh crore worth of tax evasion, began criminal prosecution in 2814 cases, and have arrested 3,893 people in the last three years, according to a statement by the Central Board of Direct Taxes.

“Concerted and coordinated actions of law enforcement agencies under the Department of Revenue have achieved phenomenal success in fighting the menace of black money during the last three years,” according to the CBDT statement. “The period has witnessed unprecedented enforcement actions in direct and indirect taxes.”

According to the CBDT, it has conducted 23,064 searches or surveys, of which 17,525 were conducted on account of income tax, 2509 for customs, 1913 for central excise, and 1120 for service tax.

“More than ₹1.37 lakh crore of tax evasion has been detected (Income Tax ₹69,434, Customs ₹11,405, Central Excise ₹13,952, Service Tax ₹42,727). Simultaneously, criminal prosecutions were launched in 2814 cases (Income Tax 1966, Customs 526, Central Excise 293, Service Tax 29) and 3893 persons were placed under arrest (Customs 3782, Central Excise 47, Service Tax 64),” according to the CBDT.

The Enforcement Directorate also intensified its anti-money laundering actions, registering 519 cases, conducting 396 searches, making arrests in 79 cases and attaching properties worth ₹14,933 crore.

More than 245 benami transactions have been identified under the Benami prohibition law and properties worth ₹55 crore have been provisionally attached across 124 cases.

“Relevant laws and rules have been streamlined and tightened, plugging the loopholes and strengthening the penal provisions.”

Curbing cash deals

“Effective steps were taken to track and curb cash transactions through various means like penalising cash transaction of more than ₹2 lakh, limiting allowable cash expense up to ₹10,000 only, making Aadhaar mandatory for obtaining PAN and filing of income tax returns, making PAN mandatory for cash deposits above ₹50,000, compulsory linking of PAN with bank accounts, prohibiting cash of ₹20,000 or more in transfer of immovable property by imposition of a penalty of an equal amount, and mandatory reporting of cash deposits above ₹2.5 lakh in savings accounts and ₹12.5 lakh in current account during November 9 to December 30, 2016,” according to the statement.

During the last three financial years (2013-14 to 2015-16), Income Tax investigations have led to the detection of more than 1,155 shell companies used as conduits by over 22,000 beneficiaries, the government said, adding that the amount involved in non-genuine transactions by such beneficiaries was more than ₹13,300 crore.

The Ministry of Corporate Affairs has issued more than a lakh notices for striking off names of defunct or non-compliant companies while a high-powered group has been set up to coordinate and monitor the actions taken by various departments tasked with eliminating the conduits of black money generation.

“The relentless crusade against black money will get further intensified in the coming days making the tax evaders and money launderers realise that they have to pay a heavy cost for their deviant behaviour,” according to the statement.

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