Track2Realty-Agencies:Â The Central Board of Direct Taxes (CBDT) has ordered an Income Tax department investigation against a number of real estate developers who were recently shown by an investigative portal to be willing to accept alleged black money in property transactions.
The apex authority of the I-T department has asked its investigation units across the country to furnish to it reports of any action or probe conducted against the groups named by the portal in the past and in case such an action has not been done, the CBDT has ordered the same to be initiated.
âThe CBDT has asked the investigation units of the I-T department that all these reports should reach it by the first fortnight of December,â a senior official said.
The investigation done by portal Cobrapost.Com included many developers from the national capital region and those from other parts of the country including Mumbai.
While releasing the transcripts and video recordings of its investigation at a press conference here, the portal said that executives from these companies, including some CEOs and CMDs, were ready to accept anywhere between 10-80 per cent of the property value in black money.
These 35 real estate companies under scanner are spread across the national capital, Uttar Pradesh, Haryana, Rajasthan, West Bengal, Andhra Pradesh, Maharashtra and Karnataka.
While some companies had outrightly rejected the allegations that they accept black money in their property transactions, a few others had said that they have already taken action against the concerned executives.
The portal said that most of these executives expressed willingness to accept money abroad through hawala channels, including in Dubai, Bangkok, Singapore and the US.
The findings of this investigation, named ‘Operation Black Ninja’, have come at a time when the government is making all efforts to bring back unaccounted money stashed by Indian citizens abroad.
Cobrapost.Com conducted this sting operation for 18-month-long period across nine states. While releasing the transcripts and video recordings of its investigation at a press conference in New Delhi, the portal said that executives from these companies, including some CEOs and CMDs, were ready to accept anywhere between 10-80 per cent of the property value in black money.
The video clippings, which the portal said were recorded with spy cameras, showed conversations of senior executives from various companies with a person posing as a representative of a ‘prominent politician’, who was looking to convert black money into cash through substantial cash deals.
The findings of this investigation, named ‘Operation Black Ninja’, have come at a time when the government is making all efforts to bring back unaccounted money stashed by its citizens abroad.
Real estate, jewellery and mining major black money generators
Real estate, jewellery and mining are among the main sectors that are generating black moneyÂ in the country, Parliament was informed.
Minister of State for Finance Jayant Sinha said in a written reply to a query in the Lok Sabha that the Income Tax DepartmentÂ has conducted searches on 273 entities between April-September in the current fiscal.
The total assets seized by the I-T department was Rs 283 crore and undisclosed income was to the tune of Rs 3,371 crore in the first six months till September, he said.
Sectoral analysis in respect of seizures of valuables and admission of undisclosed income during searched conducted by I-T department in the last three finance years indicates that the main sectors are real estate, trading and manufacturing, contractors, service, jewellery and mining, Sinha added.
In 2013-14 fiscal, the I-T department seized assets worth Rs 808 crore and the total undisclosed income was to the tune of Rs 10,792 crore.
In a separate reply, Sinha said that the revenue department has registered 139 cases under the Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA) between January-October. The value of properties attached was Rs 1,911 crore.
For the year 2013, 143 cases were registered under PMLA and Rs 851 crore worth properties were attached.