CVC seeks CBI help to solve Games puzzles

UK broadcast firm found evading Rs 29 cr tax

The move seeking the CBI’s help comes shortly after a UK-based firm, given broadcast rights worth Rs 246 crore, was found to be evading Rs 29- crore tax, allegedly aided by the Prasar Bharti.

A CBI probe could take to logical conclusion issues like payment to non-existent parties, delay in execution of contracts, inflated prices, bungling in purchase and renting of overlays, including equipment worth several crores through tendering, government sources said.

The CVC that is currently investigating the Games discrepancies will submit its findings to a committee formed by Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and headed by former Comptroller and Auditor General V K Shunglu.

Shunglu, who returned from a visit abroad, told reporters that he was waiting for the issue of terms and references on the committee from the PMO to begin the probe. The UK-based firm, SIS Live, under scanner, had allegedly opened an Indian arm “solely” for the purpose of executing a Games contract and evading tax. The Income Tax department has invoked provisions of double taxation avoidance agreement between India and the UK to go after the British firm.

Survey on the Indian arm of the British company were conducted by I-T sleuths, who found alleged discrepancies in the financial documents of the firm. It was allegedly trying to evade taxes to the tune of Rs 29 crore.

The I-T department subsequently asked the Prasar Bharti that had made Doordarshan enter into a contract with the company to cut taxes from its receipts under the tax deducted at source category. The terms of payment by Prasar Bharti were also being looked into by investigators.

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