New Delhi, February 13, 2017

The Supreme Court will start the detailed hearing on the Public Interest Litigation (PIL) filed in the Panama Papers leak case from March 7.

Advocate Manohar Lal Sharma had earlier filed a petition, seeking an apex court-monitored probe against the Indian offshore account holders and stock market regulators.

The International Consortium of Investigative Journalists (ICIJ), a non-profit organization based in Washington D.C., obtained a cache of 11.5 million records detailing the offshore holdings of a dozen current and former world leaders as well as businessmen, criminals, celebrities and sports stars.

The case is currently being monitored by a multi-probed agency headed by the Central Board of Direct Taxes (CBDT) chairman Atulesh Jindal and attended by officials from the investigative unit of the CBDT and its Foreign Tax and Tax Research division, the Financial Intelligence Unit (FIU) and the Reserve Bank of India (RBI).

The group was constituted, on the directions of the Prime Minister, to look into all cases of Indians setting up offshore entities in tax havens.

A Munich-based daily, Sueddeutsche Zeitung, was offered the data through an encrypted channel by an anonymous source. The data contained documents from a Panama based law firm, Mossack Fonseca. Founded by Juergen Mossack, the firm has offices across the globe and is among the world's biggest creators of shell companies.

[The Business Standard]