Govt tells SC three names of businessmen having black money accounts in foreign banks

Representative pic for black money

New Delhi, Oct 27: The Central government in its affidavit submitted before the Supreme Court on Monday revealed the names of three people, including Pradip Burman, former Executive Director of Dabur group, Pankaj Chimanlal Lodhiya, a Rajkot based bullion trader and Radha S Timbola, a Goa based miner, who have stashed their black money abroad.

According to reports, the three businessman have been charged under various sections of the Income Tax Act and Money Laundering Act.

Dabur, however, reportedly issued a statement saying that Mr. Burman’s account is legal and it is “unfortunate” that every foreign account holder is being painted with the same brush.

The statement reportedly said: “We wish to state that this account was opened when he was an NRI, and was legally allowed to open this account. We have followed all the laws and the complete details regarding the account have been voluntarily, and as per law, filed with the Income Tax Department, and appropriate taxes paid, wherever applicable.”

A news website report said that the three names are reportedly part of a list handed over by Germany in 2009 of Indians who have accounts in the tax haven of Lichtenstein.

The affidavit reportedly told the apex court that it would not be able to reveal all names unless they are prosecuted in any court of law. The court will resume hearing in the case on Tuesday.

It may be noted that there are 138 people on Centre’s list of people who have black money stashed away in foreign banks.

Four Congress names being probed: Sources

Among the Indians who are being probed for allegedly stashing black money to illicit bank accounts in Switzerland are four from the Congress, said a report citing sources. The quartet allegedly includes a former junior minister in Dr Manmohan Singh’s government.

Finance Minister Arun Jaitley told a news channel last week that the Congress would be mired in “embarrassment” and that a “big Congress name” is on the list of Indians who allegedly hold black money at HSBC in Switzerland.

In retaliation to Jaitley’s statement, Chidambaram told the news channel that “Whatever name is there will embarrass the individual, the party won’t be. These are individual transgressions.”

Meanwhile, government sources have reportedly said that income tax notices will be sent to all four Congress leaders under investigation.

The BJP, which swept the national election, vowed during its campaign to bring back the money “within 100 days” – a claim the Congress says stands exposed now as little more than bluster.

(With Agency Inputs)

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