Indian money stashed in Swiss banks swells by 50%: Strong action will be taken against illicit deposits, says Piyush Goyal

New Delhi: With deposits by Indians in Swiss banks surging, finance minister Piyush Goyal on Friday wondered how all of it can be assumed to be black money, but said strong action would be taken against anyone found guilty of wrongdoing.

India would start getting details of bank accounts from Switzerland under a bilateral treaty, he said.

Money parked by Indians in Swiss banks rose over 50 percent to CHF 1.01 billion (Rs 7,000 crore) in 2017, reversing a three-year downward trend amid India's clampdown on suspected black money stashed there.

In comparison, the total funds held by all foreign clients of Swiss banks rose about 3 percent to CHF 1.46 trillion or about Rs 100 lakh crore in 2017, according to data released by the Swiss National Bank (SNB), the central banking authority of the Alpine nation.

File image of Piyush Goyal. PIB

File image of Piyush Goyal. PIB

India has a treaty with Switzerland under which the Swiss government would provide all data from 1 January, 2018 till 31 December, 2018. India would get data as the accounting year ends, Goyal said.

Referring to the rise in Swiss bank deposits by Indians, Goyal said, "The data that you alluded to will come to us, so how are you assuming that this is black money or this is illegal transaction?"

Around 40 percent of this money is because of the Liberalised Remittance Scheme (LRS), Goyal said, citing media reports.

The scheme was introduced by former finance minister P Chidambaram. Under the LRS, an individual could remit up to $2,50,000 per year.

"We will have all information. If someone is found guilty, the government will take strong action against them," Goyal said.

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Updated Date: Jun 29, 2018 14:10:33 IST

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