The income tax department has identified 5.68 lakh new cases for verification, including 1.58 lakh taxpayers who made partial declaration of accounts in the past. Post demonetisation on November 8, the tax department is flushed with information from various sources, including statement of financial transactions (SFT) filed by banks. “The income tax department has also identified 3.71 lakh new accounts relating to 1.58 lakh taxpayers who made partial declaration of accounts/amounts in their earlier responses. In addition to the earlier 18 lakh cases, 5.68 lakh new cases have been identified for e-verification process,” the I-T department said.
The tax department is conducting analysis in conjuction with previously available/analysed data. Such incremental data analysis has already led to identification of new cases for e-verification, he said. The department has used big data analytics for comparison of deposits made after the November 8 decision to scrap high- value banknotes with information in its database to identify tax-payers whose cash transactions do not appear to be in line with the tax-paying profile. Under ‘Operation Clean Money’ launched by the I-T department on January 31, the department has sent SMS and e-mails to 17.92 lakh people who have made suspicious deposits of Rs 5 lakh and above between November 10 and December 30.
Of these, 9.72 lakh person have responded on sources of the cash deposits. The department has decided to close the verification in cases where there was justifiable explanation of source of cash. “The taxpayers have provided response for 13.33 lakh accounts involving cash deposits of around Rs 2.89 lakh crore. The online responses have been assessees and no further action will be taken in cases of satisfactory explanation,” the I-T department said.
The department had engaged two specialised data analytics agencies and a business process management agency to analyse large volume of cash deposit data, track the compliance status of taxpayers and reporting entities. The department initiated the second phase of the ‘Operation Clean Money’ on April 14, under which more than 60,000 persons, including 1,300 high risk persons, have been identified for investigation into claims of excessive cash sales during the demonetisation period.
More than 6,000 transactions of high value property purchase and 6,600 cases of outward remittances shall be subjected to detailed investigations under the Operation Clean Money II. Under this, detailed investigations would be conducted on businesses like petrol pumps, traders and property purchasers claiming cash sales as the source of cash deposits which have been found to be excessive compared to their past profile or industry norms during the note ban period.