In a startling revelation, a Gujarat businessman has declared an astonishing Rs 13,000 Crore as illicit wealth to Income Tax Authorities, a report said. The voluntarily disclosure of the whopping amount came after he did not pay the tax on the unaccounted income. Mahesh Shah’s declaration was termed as unaccounted income under the Centre’s Income Declaration Scheme (IDS) on September 30, the very last day of the scheme. Notably, the IDS offered immunity to those who declared their unaccounted income once they paid the tax. But based on this, Shah can be caught. IT Department officials said that 13,000 crores were “declared black” after Shah did not pay the first installment of the tax- an amount of Rs 975 crores — by November 30. IT Dept officials said they have been conducting searches at several places connected to Apaji Amin & Company. “IT Dept doing its job, they will now record Mahesh Shah’s statement,” CA of Mahesh Shah Tehmul Sethna said.
Search operations were carried out by the IT Department and it was learned that “Shah declared black money on behalf of several big shots of Ahmedabad.” IT Department is also conducting a search at the offices of Mahesh Shah’s accountant.
Watch this video
This came days after Lok Sabha passed a Bill that seeks to tax the unaccounted money deposited in banks under a new fixed-tenure Pradhan Mantri Garib Kalyan Yojana (PMGKY), 2016. While the total tax in case such unaccounted asset is declared now will be only 50%, a benign rate considering what concealed income would have otherwise attracted under the extant law, the opposition parties failed to highlight this virtual amnesty given to tax cheats. They even refused to take the government’s offer for a debate before the Bill was put to a voice vote.