I-T dept unearths tax evasion and unexplained investments amounting to Rs 50 cr in J-K

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Search and seizure operations by the income tax department in Jammu & Kashmir in two separate cases unearthed tax evasion and unexplained investments amounting to as much as Rs 50 crore, the Central Board of Direct Taxes said in a statement Thursday.

The operation conducted on a prominent hotelier led to seizure of incriminating documents showing unexplained investments in immovable properties, construction of hotels and residences aggregating to Rs 25 crore in the last six financial years. Unpaid taxes since assessment year 2014-15 and investments in cash outside known sources of income have also come to fore. A bank locker found has been put under restraint.

The hotelier owns a chain of hotels at Srinagar, Gulmarg, Sonamarg and Pahalgam with another hotel under construction at Leh.

Receipt of unsecured loans of Rs 25 crore in the past two years from persons of no-means has been found. “All these loans are prima-facie not genuine, as the same have been advanced by persons with doubtful creditworthiness,” the Board said, adding that investigations were ongoing.

The search also revealed that the assessee’s children are studying in USA on whom expenditure of approximately Rs 25 lakh per year is being incurred, which prima-facie appears to be unexplained or undisclosed. “Further, the assessee is also running a B-Ed College as a Trust along with his mother. The Trust in not registered and no return is being filed for the Trust though it has substantial taxable income. The assessee has also admitted to having incurred expenditure of Rs. 40.00 lakh on renovation of his residential house,” the Board added.

Separately, searches in another case of a prominent jeweller in Srinagar were carried out which unearthed unmaintained books of accounts even though the turnover is between Rs 2 crore and Rs 10 crore in the earlier years.

“The search has revealed that an undeclared bank account was maintained by the assessee with deposits running into crores of rupees, which has not been offered to tax. He also sold immovable property of Rs. 1.90 crore in Srinagar in financial year 2015-16, capital gains tax on which has not been paid,” the Board said.

Documents showing receipt Rs 16 in cash as ‘Pagri’ in FY 2019-20 at the time of leasing of one of the shops was found among undisclosed incomes, which is in violation of provisions of Section 269SS of the Income-tax Act, 1961. The assessee has not paid capital gains tax on sale of a flat in Delhi for Rs 33 lakh in FY 2019-20, of which Rs 13 lakh was received in cash from an undisclosed buyer. This is in violation of provisions of Section 269SS of the Income-tax Act, 1961.

“The search also revealed that the daughter of the assessee was studying abroad and the expenditure on account of the same prima-facie appears unexplained/undisclosed,” the Board said.

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