NEW DELHI: On its first day in power, NDA-II hit the ground running by announcing the setting up of a Special Investigation Team (SIT), as mandated by the Supreme Court, to unearth black money stashed abroad.
The Prime Minister Narendra Modi-led Cabinet chose a subject that the BJP consistently raised during its election campaigns to win a massive mandate. The symbolism of ‘first day-first decision’ meant the government send an appropriate message to the country by promising to bring back “large amounts of money stashed abroad by evading taxes or generated through unlawful activities”.
New Law and Telecom Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad said the SIT would comprise two former Supreme Court judges — justices MB Shah and Arijit Pasayat — along with chiefs of the country’s top intelligence and investigative agencies like the CBI, Intelligence Bureau, Research and Analysis Wing, Directorate of Revenue Intelligence, Enforcement Directorate, Central Board of Direct Taxes, Financial Intelligence Unit and Narcotics Control Bureau. The RBI Deputy Governor and Secretary Revenue will also be part of the team, which was announced here after the Cabinet meeting.
“Our government is committed to pursue black money. This was the first agenda item of the new Cabinet,” Prasad said during the government’s first official press briefing.