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Tax liability of Kolkata shell firms stands at Rs 40,000 cr

Out of 331 shell companies banned by Sebi for trading, nearly 150 are from Kolkata alone

Namrata Acharya  |  Kolkata 

Rs 400 bn tax liability for shell companies from Kolkata

in —numbering in the thousands — have a tax liability of about Rs 40,000 crore, according to sources in the income-tax (I-T) department.
Of the 331 ‘shell’ companies recently flagged by the (Sebi), nearly 150 are from the West Bengal capital alone.
The capital regulator directed stock exchanges on Monday to immediately restrict trading in these firms, identified as “shell companies” by the Ministry of Corporate Affairs in consultation with the Serious Fraud Investigation Office (SFIO) and the I-T department.
The I-T department had initiated investigations into in about three years ago, and much of the probe has been completed by now. A large number of cases pertaining to such firms are now pending with appellate authorities.
Since the beginning of this year, particularly after demonetisation, the I-T department has further tightened its noose around in the city.
Meanwhile, the department has also initiated action against involved in promoting It is also in touch with Institute of of India (ICAI) regarding the issue.
A large number of accounting professionals involved in creating are entry operators. According to informal estimates, about 75 per cent of the professionals involved in opening in are not even professional CAs.
Earlier this year, Arijit Pasayat, vice-chairman of a Special Investigation Team (SIT) appointed by the Supreme Court, visited to undertake a coordinated action against
The reason why had been a preferred choice of is said to be easy availability of accounting professionals, with an established network to set up a shell company.
Last year, the Prime Minister’s Office formed a task force to prevent the formation of In a statement, it had said a sample survey found Rs 1,238 crore in cash was deposited in these entities during November-December.  And, that 559 beneficiaries laundered money to the extent of Rs 3,900 crore with the help of 54 professionals.

First Published: Thu, August 10 2017. 23:52 IST