Actor Sonu Sood involved in tax evasion of over Rs 20 crore, says Income Tax department
NEW DELHI: Bollywood actor Sonu Sood, whose properties were raided by the income tax department recently, evaded more than Rs 20 crore tax, the Central Board of Direct Taxes (CBDT) said on Saturday. Besides, the actor violated the Foreign Contribution Regulation Act (FCRA) by raising Rs 2.1 crore from overseas donors, CBDT added.
According to the tax department, the actor used his NGO Sood Charity Foundation to collect donations.
The NGO collected Rs 18.94 crore since 1 April 2021 but spent only Rs 1.9 crore towards various relief works; the remaining Rs 17 crore was found lying unutilised in the bank account of the Foundation.
The tax department claimed that Sood used to route his unaccounted income in the form of bogus unsecured loans from many bogus entities. Investigations so far have found 20 such entries, it added. “They have accepted to have issued cheques in lieu of cash.
There have been instances where professional receipts have been camouflaged as loans in the books of accounts for the purpose of evasion of tax,” a CBDT statement read.
Earlier, I-T sleuths had conducted a search and seizure operation at various premises of the 47-year-old actor in Mumbai and a Lucknow-based real estate development firm with which Sood has links. A total of 28 properties spread over Mumbai, Lucknow, Kanpur, Jaipur, Delhi, and Gurgaon were covered in the search operation?
The search operations at the premises of the Lucknow-based firm unearthed incriminating evidence pertaining to tax evasion and irregularities in the books of account, the CBDT added.
The search revealed the group was allegedly involved in bogus billing of subcontracting expenses and siphoning off funds. The tax department recovered evidence of such bogus contracts worth Rs 65 crore, it said. It added that the Lucknow group has entered into a dubious circular transaction to the tune of Rs 175 crore with an infrastructure company based in Jaipur.