Undisclosed foreign assets

New Delhi, Jan 11: A special unit has been created by the government in the countrywide investigation wings of the Income Tax department for focused probe in cases of undisclosed assets held by Indians abroad and possession of black money in foreign shores, officials said.

The Foreign Asset Investigation Units (FAIUs) have been recently created in all the 14 investigation directorates of the tax department located in various parts of the country that are primarily tasked to undertake raids and seizures, and develop intelligence to check tax evasion done by various methods.

A total of 69 existing posts in the tax department were “diverted” by the Central Board of Direct Taxes in November last for the creation of this unit after approval from Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman, a senior officer told PTI.

“The FAIUs have been created as new wings within the various investigation directorates of the tax department to bring focus on cases of undisclosed assets held abroad by Indians and black money stashed abroad.

“India is now getting voluminous data in this context by way of various fresh treaties signed and some of those which have been renegotiated in recent past,” another officer said.

“We are now in a global regime where automatic exchange of tax information is the norm. More and more countries and jurisdictions are following the international protocols set by the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development and the Financial Action Task Force for tax transparency and combating instances of global money laundering, terror financing and tax evasion,” he said. – PTI