The Union Finance Minister Arun Jaitley announced on Saturday that the Central Board of Direct Taxes (CBDT) had under the Income Disclosure Scheme, 2016 received total disclosures of Rs. 65,250 crore in the form of cash and other assets. But since some disclosures that were received manually still remain to be tabulated and verified, the figure could be revised upward.
The four-month window under the scheme for declaring undisclosed income or black money that had escaped assessment closed on Friday at midnight.
Mr Jaitley told a media conference on Saturday that the disclosures received were “significant, given the average disclosure are of about Rs. 1 crore.” In all, 64,275 declarations were filed online as well in printed copies of the prescribed form.
“With the final stocktaking of declarations being filed in physical printed forms all over the country till late night on the last day, this number is likely to be further revised upwards,” an official release said.
The scheme had provided a one-time opportunity to black money holders who had not paid full taxes in the past to come clean by declaring their domestic undisclosed income and assets by paying tax plus penalty at the rate of 45 per cent. No target for disclosures or collections from the scheme had been set for the CBDT, he said. The government stands to mop up 45 percent of this, or about Rs. 29,000 crore, in taxes and penalties.
The CBDT removed the difficulties that had been expressed by those wanting to avail of the scheme, especially with respect to making the tax payment within a short span by agreeing to accept them three instalments, the last being in September 2017. The declarants have been assured of the absolute confidentiality of the declarations made.
The income tax and penalties collected under the scheme will be used for public welfare, Mr Jaitley said. “If we become a totally tax compliant country we will have more resources for public welfare.”
— Narendra Modi (@narendramodi) October 1, 2016
Mr Jaitley shared the progress of the steps, he said, the BJP-led NDA Government had taken in the last two years for increasing tax compliance and reducing tax avoidance in the country.
In the 175 cases of black money allegedly stashed overseas in HSBC bank accounts, the CBDT has already filed 164 prosecutions following assessments of sums that add up to Rs 8,000 crore. The probe is being monitored by the Special Investigation Team (SIT) set up under the directions of the Supreme Court.
Following the leads from the investigations undertaken by the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists (ICIJ), it has detected Rs. 5,000 crore of undisclosed deposits in foreign accounts made and filed 55 prosecution cases in those cases.