Pradip Burman, one of the Dabur India promoters, whose name has figured in the list given by the Centre to the Supreme Court in the blackmoney issue, has been granted bail but barred from leaving the country by a Delhi court in an alleged tax evasion case.
Additional Chief Metropolitan Magistrate Devender Kumar Sharma granted the relief to Burman, who appeared before him, but directed that he will not leave the country without its prior permission after the Income Tax (IT) department argued that there was a likelihood that accused may leave the country to avoid his prosecution in the case.
“Having heard the submission on behalf of the parties, the present case being a complaint case, accused Pradip Burman is admitted to bail subject to furnishing of personal bond in a sum of Rs 25,000 and a surety of like amount.
“Further the accused is hereby directed not to leave the country without prior intimation and prior permission from this court during the pending trial,” the court said.
According to IT department’s complaint, Burman was holding foreign bank accounts but he did not disclose about it in his income tax returns and there were undisclosed deposits in those two accounts.
Advocate Brijesh Garg, appearing for IT department, said when Burman was questioned, he denied having any account in foreign bank but later on, when he was confronted with several documents, he admitted having bank accounts abroad.
A case was registered against Burman under the Income Tax Act for the offences relating to concealment of income and tax evasion.
The court, after taking cognisance of the complaint by the IT department, had summoned Burman as accused in the case.
Burman appeared in the court in pursuance to summons issued against him and he was supplied with the copy of the complaint and other documents.
The court has now fixed the matter for December 3 for precharge evidence and all the witnesses have been summoned for that day.
Seeking bail, Burman’s counsel submitted that it was a complaint case and his client was ready to abide by any terms and conditions imposed by the court.
IT department’s counsel Garg submitted that the complaint was filed against Burman for evasion of tax and for furnishing false information/verification.
“The present case is out of several cases in respect to black money for which investigation is going on by the and under the supervision of Special Investigation Team (SIT) constituted by the Supreme Court of India,” Garg said.
He said the court should impose condition upon him not to go outside the country as there was every likelihood that he may leave the country to avoid his prosecution.
The Centre on October 27 has disclosed before the apex court eight more names including that of Burman, a bullion trader and Goa miners against whom it has started prosecution for allegedly stashing black money in foreign banks.
Rajkot-based bullion trader Pankaj Chimanlal Lodhya and Goa-based mining company Timblo Private Limited and its five directors were among the names that figured in the list which was filed in the Supreme Court by the government.
While Burman’s name was received from French authorities, the names of Lodhia and others have been received from “other countries”.
Shortly after the disclosure in the Supreme Court, Dabur India promoter family, Burmans had said the account complied with all legal requirements.
“We wish to state that this account was opened when he (Pradip) was an NRI, and was legally allowed to open this account,” a Dabur spokesperson had said in a statement.