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HSBC, ICIJ list: Rs 16,200 crore black money detected abroad, says Arun Jaitley

The central government detected over Rs 16,200 crore in black money after investigations on global leaks about Indians stashing funds abroad, finance minister Arun Jaitley informed Parliament on Tuesday.

About Rs 8,200 crore (including protective assessment of income of Rs 1,497 crore) of undisclosed income was brought to tax in the last two years on account of deposits made in unreported offshore accounts in HSBC Bank.

Further, Rs 8,000 crore of credits in the undisclosed foreign accounts of Indians, whose names were disclosed by the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists (ICIJ), were detected, Jaitley said in a written reply to the Rajya Sabha.

"There is no official estimation of quantum of black money stashed abroad by Indians," he said.

The government is, however, committed to taking all possible measures to bring back black money stashed by Indians in foreign countries, he said. The Black Money (Undisclosed Foreign Income and Assets) and Imposition of Tax Act, 2015 (The BM Act) was enacted to specifically and effectively tackle black money stashed away abroad, the minister said.

The BM Act provides for more stringent provisions of penalties and prosecutions with respect to money stashed away abroad, he said. Further, under this law, for the first time the offence of wilful attempt to evade tax, etc. in relation to undisclosed foreign income/assets has been made a Scheduled Offence for the purposes of the Prevention of Moneylaundering Act, 2002 (PMLA), he added. Jaitley also listed government measures enacted to curb the menace.

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