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Income tax lens on LS hopefuls

Income tax officials will begin scrutinising affidavits filed by Lok Sabha candidates from Jharkhand in a multi-pronged endeavour to curb the use of pelf in polling.

Outgoing state chief tax commissioner K.K. Sinha said they were waiting for nominations for the third phase to be filed before launching their extensive review.

“All affidavits filed so far by MP hopefuls have been downloaded for scrutiny. We will, however, wait for the third phase papers before we officially start verifying details of income tax returns filed by candidates in their own names and in those of their spouses and children,” Sinha, who retired on Tuesday, told The Telegraph.

The senior tax official said affidavits filed by repeat candidates would further be compared to the details they furnished during the 2009 polls. “This was one of my final orders before I relinquished office,” Sinha said.

The twin acts of income tax and wealth tax empower the chief commissioner or the commissioner to call for details of income from all sources, examine them and, if discrepancies are found, collect dues and impose penalties.

Sinha said that in addition to scrutinising affidavits under provisions of the Income Tax Act, all papers would also be reviewed under the Wealth Tax Act. “Every abnormal increase in value of immovable assets like land and buildings will be looked into,” he added.

Against a target of Rs 3,561 crore for 2013-14, tax collection from Jharkhand has crossed Rs 3,800 crore for the just concluded fiscal.

Income tax surveys are being conducted on a regular basis. All high-value transactions are also being closely monitored. In the last fiscal, 50,000 notices had been served against those who did not file IT returns.

“We are already on the job this year,” said tax commissioner Gautam Mandal.

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