UP govt sends reminder notice to Bhushans on tax evasion

"A notice was issued on February 5 last to Bhushan (lawyer Shanti Bhushan), his two sons Prashant and Jayant, besides daughter Shefali, who had purchased properties spread over 7,818 sq metres of land in Civil Lines area in October by allegedly evading stamp duty of Rs 1.33 crore," Deputy Inspector General, department of Stamps and Registration, Panna Lal, told reporters here.

He said a reminder has been issued on April 15 to Shanti Bhushan and his children, asking them to reply to the notice latest by April 28. "If they fail to do so, a fresh notice would be issued after that date. If no reply is given to the second notice as well, then the process for attaching the property may have to be initiated," he said.

The Bhushans have allegedly evaded the stamp duty  by undervaluing their property worth nearly 20 crore. The land was purchased through an "agreement to sell" between the Bhushans, and the property's previous owners -- Harimohan Das Tandon, Sudhir Tandon and Satish Tandon, for just Rs one lakh and the agreement was formalised on stamp paper of only Rs 2,000, Lal said.

The former Union Law Minister Shanti Bhushan resided in the bungalow situated on the land in 1970s, before he moved to New Delhi. He had, however, not foregone the possession of the bungalow and his family was consequently involved in a litigation with the Tandons.

Later, both sides decided on the "agreement to sell". However, Shanti Bhushan's son and lawyer Prashant has repeatedly denied the allegations of evading stamp duty.

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