Maran refutes tax evasion charges

Sun TV owner says there was only a 'delay'

Maran refutes tax evasion charges

Refuting tax evasion charges, Sun TV group owner Kalanithi Maran on Thursday made it clear that his group was not a “tax dodger”.

“The companies of the Sun Group collectively and me in my personal capacity pay more than Rs 600 crore as taxes annually to the national exchequer...There have been several occasions when tax authorities have awarded trophies and honoured Sun TV Network Ltd with citations for exemplary compliance and for topping the region in terms of highest tax payments,” Maran said.

The statement came against the backdrop of reports that the budget airline SpiceJet Ltd, its chairman Kalanithi Maran and another top company official have been summoned as accused by a Delhi court in two tax evasion cases for their alleged failure to deposit over Rs 147 crore TDS with the income tax department.

Stating that the SpiceJet was the only company in the Sun Group that had difficulty in making timely payments during 2014, which was inevitable given the very challenging times faced by the entire airline industry, Maran said, “Despite those hurdles, we had cleared all its dues around February 2015 well before the new promoter took over.”

“There was no evasion of tax as reported but only a delay in making those remittances,” Maran said.

Pointing out that he was a non-executive Chairman of the board of directors and was never designated as the Principal Officer of the company, he said, “I was never in charge of the day-to-day affairs at SpiceJet Ltd. Therefore, I had no knowledge of the routine operations of the airline nor was I ever responsible for periodic tax compliances”
Maran said it was unfortunate that after almost a period of six months after payment of TDS dues by SpiceJet, a case has been suddenly filed naming him an accused, despite knowing fully well that he was not in charge of the day-to-day operations of SpiceJet.

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