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Finance ministry likely to issue fresh I-T notice in NDTV case

Sources added that the Supreme Court had endorsed the view of the Income Tax Department that “there were reasons to believe that income had escaped assessment,” in the case of NDTV for Assessment Year 2008-2009, said finance ministry sources who did not want to be named. They added that the apex court has not given any clean cheat to NDTV.

ET Bureau|
Last Updated: Apr 03, 2020, 11.44 PM IST
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The IT Department had reopened the case in March 2015 on the grounds that funds amounting to Rs 405.09 crore introduced into the books of NNPLC.
New Delhi: The finance ministry is likely to issue fresh notice in the income tax re-assessment case of NDTV, sources aware of the development said.

Sources added that the Supreme Court had endorsed the view of the Income Tax Department that “there were reasons to believe that income had escaped assessment,” in the case of NDTV for Assessment Year 2008-2009, said finance ministry sources who did not want to be named. They added that the apex court has not given any clean cheat to NDTV.

Sources added further that the Supreme Court held that “the notice issued to the assessee shows sufficient reasons to believe on the part of the assessing officer to reopen the assessment,” and accordingly gave liberty to Revenue Department, to issue fresh notice under the second proviso of Section 147 to reopen the assessment of 2008-09.

The department can assess the same assessment year again by resorting to another provision relating to foreign assets where the limitation is extended to 16 years, sources said, adding that the move would not require the revenue department of the finance ministry to show any failure on the part of the assessee to make a true and full disclosure in the original assessment.

The IT Department had reopened the case in March 2015 on the grounds that funds amounting to Rs 405.09 crore introduced into the books of NNPLC, a UK based subsidiary of NDTV, was NDTV’s own undisclosed income.

Sources said that NDTV Ltd had through a scheme designed to re-introduce or re-route its undisclosed income over three Assessment Years by layering it through its various subsidiary companies, with the ultimate destination being NDTV. Additions on undisclosed income of Rs 87 crore and Rs 642.54 crore in assessment years of 2007-08 and 2009-10, respectively, have already been made.

Sources aware of the developments added that the IT department held the view of the company having introduced its own undisclosed income of $100 million by way of coupon bonds, which required examination and scrutiny, and therefore sought reassessment proceedings. The IT department said that NNPLC, UK, being a post-box company with no real net-worth or any business activity, could never have raised $100 million from investors.

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