Election Commission calls revenue secretary and CBDT to explain searches before elections
The Election Commission has called the revenue secretary and chairman of the Central Board of Direct Taxes on Tuesday to discuss the recent income tax searches.
Revenue secretary A.B. Pandey and CBDT chairman P.C. Mody have been called to explain the searches amid allegations by the Congress that the ruling BJP was using enforcement agencies to target it just before elections are to start.
The election watchdog had on Sunday 'strongly advised' the finance ministry that any action by its agencies during election time should be 'neutral' and 'non-discriminatory' and officials of the poll panel should be kept in the loop about such actions.
The advice had come against the backdrop of the tax department's raids in Madhya Pradesh on Sunday and in Karnataka, Tamil Nadu and Andhra Pradesh in the recent past on politicians and people connected to them.
The income tax department on Monday said it has detected a 'widespread and well-organised' racket of collection of unaccounted cash of about Rs 281 crore during raids against close aides of Madhya Pradesh chief minister Kamal Nath and others.
It said its sleuths had foound Rs 14.6 crore of 'unaccounted' cash and seized diaries and computer files of suspect payments between Madhya Pradesh and Delhi.
The Central Board of Direct Taxes said the department has also detected a trail of Rs 20 crore suspect cash allegedly being moved to the 'headquarters of a major political party in Delhi' from the house of an important person who lives on Tughlaq Road, home to many VIPs.