Books completely manufactured in diamond trade: I-T

 "(In) certain areas like real estate or diamond trade there is a lot of circulation of black money...but in the case of diamond merchants, the books are completely manufactured," Director General of Income Tax (Investigations) B P Gaur told reporters here late last
evening.

In the case of the diamond trade, there may be a "complete mismatch" between what "is the real transaction and what is being shown in the books," which makes the job of the department very difficult, he said.

"It requires very deep investigations to find out the truth," Gaur said. The DG was speaking in presence of the Central Board of Direct Taxes member, Prakash Chandra, after the unveiling of a reference book for I-T officials which explains the 'dos and dont's' while carrying out an assessment or investigation with sector-wise real-life cases as examples

The Department's task is becoming increasingly harder in recent years, as frauds are becoming more and more sophisticated, Gaur said, adding it was vital not to allow fraudsters to take advantage of loopholes in the law.

On the presence of tax havens and strategies of the Department to deal with them, Chandra said the government will soon be posting 10 officers in "important countries" who will help in curtailing the menace.

"The officers have been shortlisted and some approvals are necessary (before they are posted)," he added. When asked about the direct tax collection target for Mumbai region, which contributes a third to the direct tax kitty, Chandra declined to give an exact number but added that normally, the target was 20 per cent higher than the previous year.

Last fiscal, Mumbai achieved a direct tax collection of over Rs 1.50 lakh crore. Among the sectors which are facing trouble, Chandra said the cement industry was going through a difficult patch, which is more "cyclical" in nature.

However, he was quick to point out that what worried the tax sleuths the most was the performance of the oil companies.

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