Business Today

Black money: Jet Airways's parent company on I-T dept radar

Jet Airways has been served notices by the Income Tax (I-T) department over a Swiss bank account in the name of Tailwinds, the Isle of Man-based parent of Jet Airways, which holds 79.99 per cent stake in the airline.

Mail Today Bureau   New Delhi     Last Updated: December 27, 2011  | 14:33 IST

Jet Airways has been served notices by the Income Tax (I-T) department over a Swiss bank account in the name of Tailwinds, the Isle of Man-based parent of Jet Airways, which holds 79.99 per cent stake in the airline. The I-T department has served two notices to Jet's co-founder, Naresh Goyal , a move by the government to unearth black money stashed abroad.

The first notice to Goyal was issued under Section 131 of the Income Tax Act seeking production and examination of books of accounts and other relevant documents. The second notice, served under Section 148, sought to reopen assessments of Tailwinds' books for 2006-07, a leading news television has reported.

Naresh Goel
Naresh Goel, co-founder, gets I-T notices
According to sources, Goyal immediately responded to the first notice, stating that the Tailwinds accounts were officially disclosed to and approved by the Reserve Bank of India (RBI), Foreign Investment Promotion Board (FIPB), and the ministry of civil aviation and that there was no tax evasion. In an email reply told the TV channel Goyal said, "I have received two notices under section 131 of and under section 148 of the Income Tax Act. I have replied and adequately dealt with the same."

However, Goyal's response to the second notice which sought clarifications on Tailwinds' income from India is not known. The airline did not respond when contacted.

The I-T notices are part of a wider probe by the tax department into bank accounts held overseas by non-resident Indians (NRIs) such as Goyal. The tax department received inputs on Tailwinds' account in HSBC, Geneva, from French authorities.

The list of NRIs with overseas bank accounts came from a former HSBC employee, who stole the data from the bank and handed it over to French authorities. Such a list has to be certified by Swiss authorities before it can be used as evidence in any court of law. Faced with a number of cases of denial of secret foreign bank account holdings, the Income Tax department has re-opened past tax returns of such individuals in Mumbai and Delhi, among other places, in order to unearth black money stashed abroad.

Courtesy: Mail Today 

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