Two days from now, the Indian Government will be celebrating Anti-Black Money Day on the 1st anniversary of Demonetization. Names of Indians in Paradise Papers is surely a negative sign against the black money stashed abroad.
From Panama to Paradise Papers; Corruption is Eternal
18 months after the Panama Leaks that named many Indian personalities, Paradise Papers popped up naming about 714 Indian figures for transactions and financial details in Bermuda’s Appleby and Singapore’s Asiaciti with other 19 tax havens all around the world. These tax havens were used to carry out financial transactions of the rich and eminent people abroad. Out of 119 countries, India ranks 19th with 714 members including big names like Amitabh Bachchan, Manyata Dutt, Union Minister for Aviation Jayant Sinha, Corporate lobbyist Niira Radia, Sun TV Aircel Maxis case, 2G case, Rajasthan Ambulance case where Sachin Pilot and Karti Chidambaram are involved.
Apart from these, there are series of Indian firms that are named including Hinduja Group, Essar Group, Jindal Steel, Apollo Tires, Havells, Videocon, DS Construction and many more. This list also included name of international personalities like Queen Elizabeth IInd, Donald Trump’s commerce secretary Wilbur Ross, Justin Trudeau’s chief fundraiser and more than 120 politicians.
Yet Again Amitabh Bachchan
Amitabh Bachchan has been named again in Paradise papers after the panama leaks 18 months ago. Amitabh Bachchan has been found holding share in Jalva Media Limited which is digital media venture started by four young Indian Entrepreneurs in Silicon Valley. Bachchan along with Silicon Valley venture capitalist Naveen Chaddha invested in this company in 2002. Before the Liberalized Remittance Scheme in 2004, all investments made in abroad by resident Indians required RBI permission. It is not clear whether he took the permission or not although the company closed down in 2005 due to bad debt.
After series of events in past few months yesterday, Amitabh Bachchan wrote a clarification blog addressing various allegations against him including BMC notice to him on illegal construction Bofors Scam, Panama leaks and others as well. He clarified that media should act responsible on issues that do not even exist. He stated that all those who have put allegation against him have not moved to court. He said that he and his family have suffered badly due to Bofors scam and that an investigator has already revealed that he was asked to plant Bachchan’s name. In Panama case, he said that he has visited and cooperated to every investigative agencies. He closed the blog saying that he needs peace.
— Amitabh Bachchan (@SrBachchan) November 5, 2017
As the Paradise papers leaked, impact was evident everywhere. But the impact on stock prices was not so negative for many firms linked with Paradise papers. Sun TV saw Rs 20 increase and the stock closed at Rs 902. Apollo Tires’ stock moved Rs 5.75 up and closed at Rs 242.20. Similarly, Havells India also saw a sharp rise of Rs 6.50 and closed at 500.10. Hinduja Group’s share price moved up by Rs 2.55 and closed at 589.90.
Full details have been provided to Indian Express. These were bonafide and legal transactions undertaken on behalf of highly reputed 1/n https://t.co/rWYEAZ1Rvy
— Jayant Sinha (@jayantsinha) November 5, 2017
India ranks 19th in terms of number of names and Income tax India has already informed that a group of agencies are expected to scrutinize the list carefully.
Investigations in these cases will be monitored through a Multi Agency Group,headed by the Chairman,CBDT(representatives fromCBDT,ED,RBI&FIU
— Income Tax India (@IncomeTaxIndia) November 6, 2017
It would be interesting to see the response of government regarding the investigation on Paradise and Panama papers in which Jayant Sinha is also named. Though Jayant Sinha has issued a clarification but the situation will remain tense in election times to come.