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Black Money Disclosure Scheme: Rs 65,000 Crore Declared, Says Arun Jaitley

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Black Money Disclosure Scheme: Rs 65,000 Crore Declared, Says Arun Jaitley

Arun Jaitley said the figure under the black money disclosure scheme will be revised upwards

Highlights

  1. Rs 65,250 crore in black money disclosed by 64,275 declarants
  2. The four-month window for tax evaders had ended on Friday
  3. The figure will be revised upwards, Arun Jaitley said
Rs 65,250 crore in black or untaxed money has been disclosed by 64,275 declarants under the centre's Income Declaration Scheme so far, Finance Minister Arun Jaitley said today. The four-month window for tax evaders to come clean under the black money disclosure scheme had ended on Friday.

Mr Jaitley said the figure will be revised upwards as the tax department is still processing some declarations.

"Roughly, the declarations work out to Rs 1 crore per declarant. Some will be higher, some will be lower," he said, but ruled out any revelation of the names of the people who have availed of the scheme. 

"We will maintain secrecy of these declarations," Mr Jaitley said, adding the tax would accrue to the Consolidated Fund of India and would be used for welfare of public.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi complimented Mr Jaitley and his team at the Finance Ministry for the "hard work" resulting in the successful outcome of Income Declaration Scheme-2016.

Under the scheme, launched on June 1, those who had evaded taxes were given the opportunity to avoid punishment by paying tax, penalty and cess totalling 45 per cent of the undisclosed income. This means that the government will get around Rs 30,000 crore as tax revenue from the scheme. 

The payments have to be made in three instalments till September 2017.

The first instalment of 25 per cent under the scheme will have to be paid by November 2016, followed by another 25 per cent by March 31, 2017. The remaining amount will have to be paid to the exchequer by September 30, 2017. 

Prime Minister Narendra Modi had earlier warned black money holders of stringent action including imprisonment after September 30, when the scheme ended.

To encourage people to declare their undisclosed income, the government said that information contained in the declaration shall not be shared with any other law enforcement agency.

Also, there was no need to explain the source of income. The scheme applied to undisclosed income pertaining to financial year 2015-16 or earlier.

The government had last year come out with a similar scheme for Indians holding undisclosed income abroad under which assets worth Rs 4,164 crore were declared.

Black money has been a hot political issue in India. Ambit Capital has estimated the country's black economy at Rs 30 lakh crore.

In 1997, the then United Front government had launched a tax amnesty scheme under which assets worth Rs 33,000 crore were declared.

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