Plug the loopholes and get back black money

Panama Papers leak brings focus again on politically sensitive and economically urgent issue

rahul

Rahul Dass | April 5, 2016 | New Delhi


#Amitabh Bachchan   #Narendra Modi   #NDA   #economy   #black money   #Panama Papers  


Filmstars and business tycoons are among the 500 Indian names that were revealed through the Panama Papers, which are over 11 million leaked documents – bringing into focus black money, a politically sensitive and economically urgent issue that has triggered considerable debate in the recent past.

Celebrities like Amitabh Bachchan and his daughter-in-law Aishwarya Rai as well as business tycoons like DLF founder KP Singh and IndiaBulls promoter Sameer Gehlaut feature in the huge cache of documents from Mossack Fonseca based in Panama, a country whose image is that of a haven for money laundering.

The Indian Express expose has once again shown that unaccounted-for wealth stashed abroad continues to be a bane for the country, despite promises during the heated campaign ahead of the general election that brought the NDA to power in 2014.

The Congress has repeatedly referred to prime minister Narendra Modi’s election campaign speeches in which he had said that black money to the tune of Rs 80 lakh crore was stashed abroad and his government would bring it back in 100 days of coming to power. He had also reportedly hinted that the repatriated money would be enough to deposit Rs15 lakh into the bank account of every Indian.

The NDA government did put in an effort that saw the passage of the black money bill. But that may not be enough to get black money that is hidden away from the prying eyes of tax sleuths.

Those who succeeded in avoiding taxes in India have been able to exploit the loopholes, which needs to be plugged.

The decision taken by the government to form a multi-agency group including the Financial Intelligence Unit, CBDT and RBI is a step in the right direction – with a caveat. It can also be a kneejerk reaction following the damning Panama Papers that have once again shown that all is not well without our financial system.

There are only guesstimates with regard to black money. A study by industry body Assocham says nearly $2 trillion or Rs 120 lakh crore of Indian black money is stashed overseas. That is more than the country's nominal GDP, which stood at Rs 114 lakh crore or $1.9 trillion in 2013-14. The numbers are simply mind-boggling.

Incidentally, as India struggles to bring back black money, Panama itself has not benefitted as the country has the second worst income distribution in Latin America—and about one-fourth of the population lives in poverty.

 

Comments

 

Other News

Bhutan’s pursuit of happiness, shortage of health sub-centres in UP, and role of digitisation in IGNOU

In many ways the story of Gross National Happiness in a country is the story of Bhutan and its modern history. There are two major transition points in Bhutan’s recent history, the beginning of the monarchy in 1907, and the transition to a Constitutional monarchy in 2008, and the pursuit of happine

Do you agree with the ban on the sale of cattle for slaughter through animal markets?

Do you agree with the ban on the sale of cattle for slaughter through animal markets?

Modi inaugurates India’s longest bridge in Assam

  Prime minister Narendra Modi celebrated three-year of his government on May 26 by inaugurating Dhola-Sadiya bridge over the Brahmaputra river in Assam’s Tinsukia district. It is the longest bridge in India, which runs 9.15 km from end to end and connects Assam with Arunachal Pradesh.

IndianOil registers highest ever profit of Rs 19,106 crore

 IndianOil posted a net profit of Rs 19,106 crore for 2016-17 fiscal as compared to a profit of Rs 11,242 crore in the last fiscal. The income from operations for the financial year 2016-17 was Rs 4,45,373 crore as compared to Rs 4,06,828 crore in the previous fiscal. IndianOil`s income from

Maiden flight of HAL’s light utility helicopter

 Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL) carried out first flight of light utility helicopter (LUH)-PT-2 on May 22 at its Bengaluru-based facility. The flight duration was about 22 minutes and pilots reported nil snag, HAL said.   “These maiden flights of indig

The rise and rise of muscular nationalism

 Narendra Modi is like Greek mythology’s King Midas: whatever he touches turns into gold. Most people in this country are left dazzled by his ability to make dramatic announcements with a statuesque flourish.   The past three years of the Modi government have left the



Video

Current Issue

Opinion

Facebook    Twitter    Google Plus    Linkedin    Subscribe Newsletter

Twitter