Blackmoney: 1st ED notice against LGT account holders

New Delhi: Stepping up action against those involved in stashing blackmoney in Swiss banks, Enforcement Directorate has slapped its first penalty notice of Rs 2 crore for alleged forex violations against an individual after probe into LGT bank list given to India by Germany two years back.

The notice under the Foreign Exchange Management Act (FEMA) has been issued against a Mumbai-based person but investigators refused to divulge the name citing strict clauses of confidentiality riding the tax exchange treaties through which these names were obtained.

The Rs 2.26 crore penalty is for "contravention" of FEMA and the money is to be remitted within the first half of this year by the concerned individual, top sources said.

Germany had, in 2011, provided the names of some Indians having secret accounts in LGT Bank.

Bringing in the prosecution, the I-T department has also recently issued penalty notices to 17 individuals named on this list for concealing income.

The action has been taken under section 271 (1)(c) of I-T Act which states action for "concealment of particulars of income or furnishing of inaccurate particulars of such income".

The statements of 17 individuals have been recorded by both I-T and ED and all of them have denied holding these accounts, the sources added.

The tax department has already filed prosecution in courts against these individuals.

The government has earlier imposed a penalty of Rs 24.66 crore on 18 individuals who have bank accounts with Liechtensteins LGT Bank on the basis of information provided by German authorities.

These names were part of about 1,400 stolen bank account details purchased by Germany.

India, according to official data, has received numerous pieces of information from several countries regarding suspicious transactions by Indian citizens, which are now under different stages of processing and investigation.