Black money probe: What we know about Indians figuring in Swiss list
Five Indians named by the Swiss bank in its official gazette for being probed in their respective countries.
Succumbing to mounting pressure to reveal the names of illegal account holders in the country's banks, Switzerland on Monday published a list of names who are facing investigation in their own countries for money laundering.
According to a report in The New Indian Express, there are five Indian names, including two women, in the list released. The five names are Gurjit Singh Kochar, Syed Mohamed Masood, Sneh Lata Sawhney, Chaud Kauser Mohamed Masood and Sangita Sawhney.
However, apart from the date of birth and the dates on which notices were sent to the individuals named, the Swiss authorities have not disclosed any other details, say reports.
According to the PTI report, the Swiss Federal Tax Administration (FTA) has asked the Sneh Lata Sawhney and Sangita Sawhney to file an appeal within 30 days before the Federal Administrative Court if they do not want their details to be shared with the Indian authorities under their 'mutual assistance' treaty on tax matters.
Here are a few details that Firstpost managed to gather about the individuals figured in the list:
Sneh Lata Sawhney featured as a joint account holder with her husband, Bhushan Lal Sawhney, the managing director of Sawhney Tyres, reports the Indian Express.
Their son, Praveen Sawhney, had earlier figured in the list of HSBC account holders released by India Against Corruption in November 2012. A report in the Business Standard said, Sawhney Tyres had made a profit of Rs 6,456 in 2010-11 and had total assets of Rs 5.67 lakh.
Though there are no confirmed reports, Gurjit Singh Kochar seems to be director of various of companies of the Wave group, the business empire of slain liquor baron Ponty Chadha.
Gurjit Singh Kochar...Director in so many Ponty Chadha's Wave Group companies.
— J Gopikrishnan (@jgopikrishnan70) May 25, 2015
So in the 5 persons from Swiss List - 2 from Sawhney Tyres, 2 from City Limousine and one from Wave group. — J Gopikrishnan (@jgopikrishnan70) May 25, 2015
The Swiss govt has confirmed the HSBC list of acc holders sent 3 years ago by the german govt.
— Prashant Bhushan (@pbhushan1) May 26, 2015
The Swiss govt has confirmed the HSBC list of acc holders sent 3 years ago by the german govt. — Prashant Bhushan (@pbhushan1) May 26, 2015
Did this IT official protect Ponty Chaddha's son in law Gurdeep Kochar, an HSBC acct holder?
— Prashant Bhushan (@pbhushan1) May 26, 2015
Did he also give an undue benefit of 237 crore to chaddha's company? — Prashant Bhushan (@pbhushan1) May 26, 2015
In February 2012, Kochar was in news when the IT sleuths had seized Rs 200 crore illegal stash from various premises of the Wave group and Ponty Chadha. According to an article in the Mail Today, the IT officials had seized Rs 38 crore from Kochar's residence.
Syed Mohamed Masood is the chairman of Mumbai-based City Limousine, and is already being probed by the Enforcement Directorate. City Limousine ran a Rs 500 crore ponzi scheme, offering car rental services. According to various media reports, Masood has duped thousands of investors offering astronomically high returns.
According to a report in MoneyLife, the City Limousine scam was the first case in which an Indian investigative agency got access to Swiss bank account details. Masood and his business firms were holding $1.25 million in 2 Swiss bank accounts and the ED had then frozen both the accounts.
"During the course of investigations, ED has issued 14 attachment orders attaching movable and immovable properties in India with a market value of over Rs130 crore in the names of City group of companies, Sayed Mohamed Masood, Mrs Chand Masood Sayed (his wife), Jabeen Masood Sayed (daughter) and Jibran Masood Sayed (son) and other directors," the report in MoneyLife said quoting ED.
with inputs from PTI
There is high probability that significant chunk of cash mobilised by Indian political parties for election funding and other expenditure are black money transactions
India today said it has independent evidence of Indians having black money in Swiss accounts and Switzerland has promised expeditious sharing of information in this regard.
Often accused of providing safe havens to black money from India and other countries, Switzerland has proposed a new bill to prevent its banks and other institutions from accepting "untaxed assets" from their clients.