Indians have over 500 billion USD in abroad: CBI

New Delhi: An estimated 500 billion dollars (nearly Rs 24.5 lakh crore) of illegal money of Indians is deposited in tax havens abroad, CBI Director A P Singh disclosed here today. Speaking at the inauguration of first interpol global programme on anti-corruption and asset recovery, he also said largest depositors in Swiss Banks are also reported to be Indians.

Without indicating the source of the estimate of the illegal Indian money abroad, he said India, in particular, has suffered from the flow of illegal funds to tax havens such as Mauritius, Switzerland, Lichtenstein and British Virgin islands. “It is estimated that around 500 billion dollars of illegal money belonging to Indians is deposited in tax havens abroad. Largest depositors in Swiss Banks are also reported to be Indians,” Singh said.

There have been various estimates of the Indian black money stashed abroad, ranging from 500 billion dollars to 1,500 billion dollars, with the Government maintaining that there could be no official estimates of an illicit activity. It said these figures are based on unverified assumptions. An international think-tank — Global Financial Integrity — had estimated that Rs 25 lakh crore has been illegally stashed away abroad by Indians. Today`s statement by the CBI Director is significant that for the first time someone in authority in India has come out with an estimate of the black money believed to have been stashed abroad.