- People who made very large cash deposits between Nov 8-Dec 30 identified
- Income Tax department has asked them to explain source of funds
- Action could be taken against them if they fail to do so within 10 days
Under Operation Clean Money or Swachh Dhan Abhiyan, the Income Tax department has already identified 18 lakh people who have made uncharacteristically large cash deposits -- mostly over Rs 5 lakh -- between November 8 and December 30. They have been sent emails and phone text messages that seek explanation about the source of funds and a response within 10 days.
In absence of a response, they will receive a notice from the tax department or further action.
The Swachh Dhan Abhiyan will help track all the accounts in which money has been deposited, said the chairman of Central Board of Direct Taxes or CBDT, Sushil Chandra. "We have hired the data analytics and we will identify the ultimate beneficiaries even in layered accounts," he added.
But the tax department, officials indicated, is walking a tightrope - trying to crack down on tax evasion and fending off charges of harassment.
Revenue Secretary Hasmukh Adhiya said people have been apprehensive of a return of the "Inspector Raj" as the tax department will have data about all the deposits. "But the new programing software will enable e-verification of all bank deposits during the period of demonetisation," he said.