Millennium Post

Black money: Govt dispels rumours on amnesty

In a statement issued by Revenue Secretary Shaktikanta Das on Saturday, it was clarified that he was misquoted in his speech made at the Chamber of Commerce here on March 5. Das explained that he had meant that a one-time compliance window for a limited and short period of time will be allowed.

The government’s move on this “one-time opportunity” over declaration of such accounts came in as a basic confusion among those, who wanted to reveal their unaccounted assets and money. Experts feel that there is no reason why anyone should declare their unaccounted money, if there is no leniency shown towards them.

Also, many feel that there are several loopholes in the government law — not “applicable” for those in tie-ups with foreign companies.

Recently, Union finance minister Arun Jaitley has announced in the Budget that a stringent law will be brought in, providing for up to 10 years of imprisonment for concealment of income. He also announced that those holding foreign bank accounts would be provided with a window to disclose their accounts and assets.

Jaitley’s announcement over the stringent law will be part of a Bill that the government plans to bring in during the current session of Parliament to curb the black money menace. The offences under these provisions will be non-compoundable.

In case of non-filing of returns or filing of returns with inadequate disclosure of foreign assets, the punishment will be rigorous imprisonment up to seven years. And, penalty for concealment of such income and assets would be at the rate of 300 per cent of the tax.

“There is no amnesty scheme. We have said very clearly – we expect everybody, who has any undisclosed wealth, accounts, so on... outside the country to disclose them,” Minister of State for Finance, Jayanta Sinha said.

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