About three lakh firms are under the scanner of the income tax department for indulged in tax evasion and money laundering during demonetization.
The Central Board of Direct Taxes (CBDT) has issued directions to income tax offices to probe against those firms who have been de-registered by the government for dubious financial credentials.
The CBDT has also asked the tax offices to undertake this special task and bring under their ambit the time period (over last two years) when these companies were struck off from the records of the Ministry of Corporate Affairs (MCA).
“To check possible misuse of such companies for money laundering activities, the board desires that the field authorities may verify deposits/withdrawals from the bank accounts of such companies during the process of striking down and just before that especially during the period of demonetization,” the CBDT, the apex policy-making body for the I-T department, said in a communication.
A senior official said the cases of money laundering will also be referred to the Enforcement Directorate as it investigates cases under this category of a tax crime.
The CBDT asked the taxman to collect the information about these firms from the public section of the Ministry of Corporate Affairs website and subsequently scan their income tax returns and check their financial transactions history from the banks where they had accounts.
“In cases of detection of unusual transactions and beneficiaries thereof, appropriate action may be taken as per provisions of the I-T Act after seeking restoration of the struck off company by filing an appeal before the National Company Law Tribunal (NCLT),” the CBDT said.
The board asked the tax department offices across the country to complete this task in a “time-bound” manner and make it a practice to keep a track of such companies who indulge in money laundering, so that a timely intervention is made by the department to the Registrar of Companies (RoC), and all details are obtained by the taxman before a firm is struck off.