Charges under black money law baseless: Chidambaram's family

Charges under black money law baseless: Chidambaram's family

Former Union Finance Minister P Chidambaram’s family on Saturday dismissed as 'baseless allegations' Income Tax department’s charge sheet against them for allegedly not disclosing their foreign assets.

They also said the action will be opposed in accordance with the law.

Two separate but identical statements issued by the chartered accountants of Chidambaram’s wife Nalini and his son Karti, daughter-in-law Srinidhi and Chess Global Advisory Services Private Limited said the investments abroad under questions have been duly reflected in their Income Tax returns.

“It is totally wrong to allege there was a wilful failure to disclose the investments. The returns of income are a complete answer to the baseless allegation. The Income Tax returns are prepared and filed on the advice of the chartered accountants. The investments in question were made through bank remittances. They were duly disclosed in the returns of income filed under Section 139 of the Income Tax Act for the relevant assessment year,” the statements said.

The CAs for the family members of Chidambaram said the Income Tax department’s charge sheets would be "opposed in accordance with law.'' The IT department had on Friday filed charge sheets or prosecution complaints against Karti, Nalini, Srinidhi and Chess Global Advisory Services Private Limited for not disclosing their foreign assets.

The filing of the charge sheet against Chidambaram’s wife Nalini, Karti and daughter-in-law Srinidhi adds to the long list of legal owes to the lawyer-politician’s family. His son Karti was arrested in the INX scam and spent nearly a month in the Tihar jail, while his wife Nalini is facing a probe by the Enforcement Directorate (ED) in the Sharada chit fund scam.

Officials had on Friday said Nalini, Karti and Srinidhi have been charged for allegedly not disclosing, either partly or fully, immovable assets like the one at Cambridge in the UK worth Rs 5.37 crore, property worth Rs 80 lakh in UK and assets worth Rs 3.28 crore in the US, they said.

The complaints were filed under the new Black Money Act passed by the Narendra Modi government to keep a check on unaccounted money. The case pertains to the assessment year 2016-17 and the prosecution complaints are expected to be taken up by the court on June 11.

Officials said the charge sheets were filed after due investigations into the case. The new anti-black money law deals with cases of overseas illegal assets, which till recently were probed under the Income Tax Act, 1961. The new legislation has provisions for a steep 120 per cent tax and penalty on undisclosed foreign assets and income, besides carrying a jail term of up to 10 years.