Demonetization Week-4 | Gujarat businessman discloses INR 13,860 crore black money

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Mahesh Shah, the Gujarat businessman who had gone missing after he disclosed Rs 13,860 crore under Centre’s Income Disclosure Scheme, appeared before media on Saturday and claimed that he had made the disclosure at behest of some people in the greed for commission.

“I will disclose the names of the people before specific I-T officers,” Shah said.

Mahesh Shah appeared in the office of a local TV channel. Later police and I-T officials arrived at the channel’s office and detained him.

“I was not running away anywhere but for some reasons I stayed away from media,” the businessman said.

“Those whose money was disclosed under IDS backed out at the last moment so I could not pay the first instalment of tax,” he said, and claimed, “I will expose everything soon. Those whose money was disclosed are businessmen and politicians.”

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“I have committed a mistake but I will reveal everything very soon. Truth will prevail in the entire matter,” he said.
Police officials said they will interrogate to find out the truth behind his claims.

Income tax department sleuths carried out searches at Shah’s residence and his chartered account Tehmul Sethna’s office and residence from November 29 to December 1 after he failed to pay the tax on the disclosed black money.
“The last time I talked to Shah was on November 29 in the presence of I-T officials. Ever since, he is inaccessible,” Sethna, a partner in the 90-year-old CA firm Appaji Amin & Co, said on Friday.

Shah, a big-ticket land dealer with business interests in Gujarat, Mumbai and Pune, had declared his income on September 30 -the last date for disclosures under IDS. The first instalment of Rs 1,560 crore, 25% of the 45% tax imposed on his declared income, was to be paid on November 30. However, Shah’s declaration form was cancelled by the I-T department on November 28.