Higher cash seizures being recorded by I-T dept every assembly polls: CBDT

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Higher cash seizures being recorded by I-T dept every assembly polls: CBDT
Source: Pixabay
New Delhi, Cash seizures made by the Income-tax department during successive assembly elections have shown a substantial increase, CBDT Chairman Nitin Gupta has said. He said the tax department is investigating these cases apart from other such instances where huge unaccounted currency and jewellery was unearthed during raids and other enforcement action by tax personnel.
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"In relation to cash seizures if we speak about the assembly elections, then it has been found that cash seizures have been quite substantial vis-a-vis cash seizure in the similar point of time five years back for the same time period of assembly elections.

"We have seen that cash seizures have been quite large and high (every assembly election). These seizures are quite significant," the chief of the Central Board of Direct Taxes (CBDT) told PTI.

The Election Commission has also spoken about the surge in the seizure of cash and illegal inducements during various state polls.

The poll panel, in an official statement issued in November last year, had declared that there has been a "significant and exponential increase" in seizures during polls in five states of Mizoram, Madhya Pradesh, Chhattisgarh, Rajasthan and Telangana.

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More than Rs 1,760 crore worth of freebies that includes cash, jewellery, narcotics, liquor and some other items were seized in these five states, which is more than seven times (Rs 239.15 crore) the seizures made in previous assembly elections in these states in 2018, the EC had said.

According to Income-tax department sources, the tax personnel found that seizure of cash during all the assembly polls held in 2023 was more than two times higher than the corresponding period of 2018.

Similarly, cash seizures made during assembly elections held in 2022 was six times higher than the comparative period of 2017.

If jewellery is added to this cash amount recorded by the tax department, then the seizures for 2023 are three-times higher than 2018 and similarly seven times higher during the 2022 vs 2017 comparative period, the sources said.

According to official data, assembly polls were held in Meghalaya, Nagaland, Tripura, Karnataka, Chhattisgarh, Madhya Pradesh, Rajasthan, Mizoram and Telangana in 2023.

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In 2022, assembly elections were held in Goa, Manipur, Punjab, Uttarakhand, Uttar Pradesh, Himachal Pradesh and Gujarat.
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