‘200 pc penalty likely on unexplained high deposits even before ITR”

I-T Department may slap a hefty 200 per cent penalty on unexplained high cash deposits in banks even before annual income tax returns are filed so as to prevent black money being converted into white during the 50-day window provided for turning in the junked Rs 500/1000 notes, a Finance Ministry official said.
‘200 pc penalty likely on unexplained high deposits even before ITR”

I-T Department may slap a hefty 200 per cent penalty on unexplained high cash deposits in banks even before annual income tax returns are filed so as to prevent black money being converted into white during the 50-day window provided for turning in the junked Rs 500/1000 notes, a Finance Ministry official said.

It is also collating data on spurt in deposits in zero- balance Jan Dhan accounts and will slap a 200 per cent penalty on unexplained high value cash deposits, he said.

After withdrawing old 500 and 1000 rupee notes, the government has allowed the banned notes to be deposited in bank accounts or exchanged for new legal tenders till December 30.

This has led to cash balances popping up in millions of Jan Dhan accounts, opened under a government scheme for beneficiaries to get their entitlements like LPG subsidy.

"Tax Department is collating data on spurt in Jan Dhan accounts. It will analyse all data and impose tax plus a 200 per cent penalty in cases of unexplained high value deposits," the official said.

Under Section 12 of the Prevention of Money Laundering Act, tax department can ask for any information from any agency including the Reserve Bank of India and cooperative banks besides all scheduled banks.

To prevent misuse of the 50-day window provided for exchange of genuine holdings of the scrapped 500 and 1000 rupee notes, the tax department may resort to imposing tax and penalty even before annual Income Tax Return (ITR) is filed, the official said.

"Any unexplained source of income can be charged with tax and a 200 per cent penalty on it. That can happen before filing of ITR. No retrospective amendment is required if high value deposits are caught before filing ITR," he said. 

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