New Delhi, July 21, 2017

The Income Tax department has detected Rs 19,447 crore of credit in undisclosed foreign accounts including HSBC, Finance Minister Arun Jaitley informed the Lok Sabha on Friday.

He said information on 628 Indian persons holding bank accounts in HSBC bank in Switzerland was received from the Government of France under Double Taxation Avoidance Convention (DTAC). An undisclosed income of about Rs 8,437 crore was brought to tax till May this year.

In a written reply, the minister said investigations into information pertaining to about 700 Indian persons allegedly linked to offshore entities based in no tax or low tax jurisdictions put into public domain by the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists (ICIJ) have led to detection of more than Rs 11,010 crore of credits in undisclosed foreign accounts. As many as 72 prosecution complaints in 31 such cases have been filed before criminal courts.

Jaitley said, “The government has pro-actively engaged with foreign governments for exchange of information under available instruments. As part of investigations in undisclosed foreign asset cases of Indians during last three years, there has been about three-fold increase in number of requests made by the Indian competent authorities under tax treaties to their counter parts abroad”.

He said the government constituted a Multi-Agency Group in April last year for facilitating investigation in the cases of Indian persons allegedly having undisclosed foreign assets, and whose names were included in Panama Papers leaks.

[The Deccan Herald]