Note ban: Income Tax uncovers Rs 246 crore transaction in benami account of Tamil Nadu political leader

Chennai/Tamil Nadu, September 9: Sleuths from the Income Tax Department of Tamil Nadu and Puducherry region discovered that a bank deposit of Rs 246 crore were made in a single transaction. The transaction was made during the ongoing drive against black money in Tamil Nadu. According to media sources, it was suspected that the money  belonged to a leading politician, that was deposited during the demonetization exercise carried out between November 8 and December 30.

It was also detected that around 441 account-holders with cumulative bank deposits of Rs 240 crore were not traced in the state, as banks do not have proper details of these customers. Notices were also sent to around 27,739 account-holders over suspicious high-value transactions by the Income Tax Department. According to reliable sources, an official said that “During our inquiry, it came to light that an individual deposited Rs 246 crore in a bank account well after banking hours. It is one of the highest deposits made during demonetization.”

The official added that “After we sent notice to him, he agreed to join the Pradhan Mantri Garib Kalyan Yojana and pay tax, fine and penalty. It is the second round of scanning of bank accounts that the Income Tax Department is carried out after demonetisation was announced. This present search is based on the details provided by the Reserve Bank of India about suspicious deposits. Several notices were sent to around 27,739 bank account holders through email and asked them to show the source of money in their accounts. We received replies from only 18,220 account holders.In spite of various reminders, others did not reveal the source of money in their accounts.”

Th official further said that “As a follow-up action, the I-T department carried out a survey of the accounts and found that details of 441 account holders were not available in the banks. The RBI has given clear-cut guidelines that all accounts must know your customer (KYC) details. But the bank officials did not bother to update such details. We have instructed many banks to initiate action against their officials who helped customers open benami accounts to convert black money into white. A total of, Rs 3,600 crore of suspicious deposits have been detected.”