Pushkar's 'sweat equity', perks under scanner

Pushkar's 'sweat equity', perks under scanner

Top sources in the Central Board of Direct Taxes (CBDT) disclosed to Deccan Herald that her “sweat equity” worth Rs 74 crore as also her independent assets, if any, in Dubai will be the focus of the probe.

The CBDT’s interest in Pushkar stems primarily from suspicions that she may not have filed tax returns in the country even though she might have had business or other financial interests in India. In her statement on Wednesday, Pushkar had claimed that she has “extensive international experience as a business executive, marketing manager and entrepreneur”.

Her claims notwithstanding, CBDT sources said the IT department will “wait for her to file her tax returns”. In this context, sources said that investigations will begin in right earnest after her tax returns for 2010-11 “come in”.

The sources said that Pushkar will have to pay a tax on the Rs 74 crore on two counts. First, if the relationship between Rendezvous Sports World (RSW) and Pushkar was one of employer-employee then she is liable to pay a perquisite (also known as perk) tax. Secondly, if the relationship between RSW and Pushkar is otherwise, she will have to end up paying a gift tax.

Enquiries by Deccan Herald revealed that Pushkar’s financial background was modest in 2000 when she could not pay Rs 3-4 lakh for plastic surgery she underwent “rhinoplasty” to improve the appearance of her nose. The surgery was performed by Dr Ashok Gupta in his M Karve Road clinic. Besides, the “nose job”, Pushkar had plastic surgery done on some other parts which Gupta refused to disclose to Deccan Herald.

“She had an average professional background. She was an ordinary office-going girl,” Gupta said, adding that at the time the surgery was performed (July 2000) Pushkar worked as a “sales girl” for a small real estate firm in Dubai. “She only paid the clinic charges,” Gupta said, surprised that Pushkar could strike it big in only 10 years.
Pushkar is believed to have worked in an IT firm in Canada before migrating to Dubai about 10 years back. Beyond that, not much is known about her professional background, except for the fact that she worked as a sales manager at Dubai-based Tecom Investments, which is a subsidiary of Dubai Holdings.

Sanjay Raina, a professional Delhi-based pop singer, and Sunanda got married in the mid-Eighties. Just before their marriage, which did not last very long, the two worked for a Delhi-based hotel company. Sunanda and Raina dated each other in Srinagar and Delhi where she earned a Bachelor of Art degree.

Now 48, Pushkar’s second marriage to a Dubai-based business man Sujith Menon ended when he met with a tragic accident in Delhi some years back. She has a 13-year-old son.

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