Gujarat, declared a whopping Rs 18,000 crore in four months flat under the Income Declaration Scheme (IDS), about 29% of the total unaccounted money disclosed across the country.
This happened between June and September 2016, before black money hogged the spotlight courtesy demonetisation and even ahead of property dealer Mahesh Shah’s disclosure of illegal income of Rs 13,860 crore.
In a reply to an RTI query, the Income-Tax (I-T) department stated that over Rs 18,000 crore was declared in Gujarat under IDS from June 2016 to September 2016 29% of the total declaration of Rs 65,250 crore under the scheme.
It took I-T department nearly two years to provide the information that RTI applicant Bharatsinh Jhala had sought in his application of December 21, 2016, after Ahmedabad-based property dealer Shah’s Rs 13,860 crore declaration. His IDS was, however, cancelled after he defaulted on payment on the first instalment.
The department has remained silent over income declared by netas, police officials and bureaucrats.
Jhala says it was nearly two years of struggle to get the information. “First, the application was misplaced. Then the department declined as the application was in Gujarati language. On September 5 this year, Chief Information Commissioner in Delhi directed I-T department to provide the information,” said Jhala.
The Union government announced the IDS in 2016 under which the declaration could be made between June 2016 and September 2016.
After declaration, the first instalment of 25% amount was to be paid by November 2016 and the second, of 25%, by March 2017. The remaining amount had to be paid till November 2017.