Hold detailed enquiry into GST tax evasion, LG writes to Kejriwal

  • | Wednesday | 21st February, 2024

Delhi Lieutenant Governor Vinai Kumar Saxena on Monday wrote a letter to Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal "advising" him to ask the Finance Minister to hold a detailed enquiry in alleged GST evasions, and tighten tax administration.  Delhi has achieved "inglorious distinction" of recording the highest tax evasion in the country. In all, 483 "bogus firms" were detected, which accounted for Rs 3,028 crore of tax evasion, Saxena said in his letter.   "It is indeed dubious that the capital of the country tops the list of tax evasion amongst all states and Union Territories, with the one on the second place behind Delhi, by as much as Rs 827 crore. This is a serious matter in which the possibility of collusion of officials in the GST department cannot be ruled out," he wrote in his letter to the Delhi chief minister.  Saxena "advised" the chief minister to direct the finance minister to hold a detailed inquiry in the matter and assess the root cause of such tax evasions.   "This not only reflects poorly on the state of tax governance in the national capital, but also results in a huge loss to the public exchequer. This resource could have been meaningfully utilised for investments in public interest," the LG said. The report for the third quarter brings out "shocking" facts about the extent of tax evasion prevailing in Delhi, the LG said referring to the alleged goods and services tax (GST) evasions.  "I trust that you will personally take interest in the matter and apprise me of the efforts being made to tighten the tax administration in the city," he stated. A report of the Central Board of Indirect Taxes and Customs, released in January, highlighted the issue of "bogus registrations and fake invoices" in the country, he stated. Delhi has gained notoriety for having the highest incidence of Goods and Services Tax (GST) evasion by fraudulent firms. Officials reported that between October and December 2023, 483 counterfeit firms were uncovered in the capital, implicated in suspected GST evasion totaling Rs 3,028 crore. Delhi ranked third, trailing behind Maharashtra (926) and Rajasthan (507), in terms of the number of counterfeit GST firms identified by authorities during this period.

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