Multi agency group to oversee investigation in Pandora Papers case


New Delhi: A multi-agency group headed by the chairman of the Central Board of Direct Taxes (CBDT) will oversee the probe into the Pandora Papers case, an official statement said on Monday.

The ‘Pandora Papers’, which revealed the financial assets of wealthy individuals around the world, includes the names of more than 300 wealthy Indians, including businessmen, and several Indians have dismissed allegations of wrongdoing.

The ‘Pandora Papers’, a leak of financial records in offshore tax havens, has been obtained by the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists (ICIJ).

The CBDT said in a statement that the government has taken note of this and the concerned investigative agencies will investigate these matters and appropriate action will be taken as per law.

“The Government has today directed that the investigation into the cases of Pandora Papers Leak appearing in the media under the name of ‘Pandora Papers’ shall be monitored through a Multi-Agency Group headed by the Chairman, CBDT, consisting of CBDT, ED will be the representative of RBI and FIU,” said the CBDT, which is the apex decision making body on income tax matters.

To ensure effective investigation of these matters, the Government will also actively engage with foreign jurisdictions to obtain information on relevant taxpayers/entities.

“The Government of India is also part of an inter-governmental grouping to ensure cooperation and experience sharing to effectively address the tax risks associated with such leaks,” the CBDT said.

It further said that so far the names of only a few Indians (legal entities as well as individuals) have appeared in the media.

Even the ICIJ website has not yet released the names and other details of all the entities.

The ICIJ website suggests the information will be released in phases and that structured data related to the Pandora Papers investigation will be released on its offshore leaks database in the coming days.

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