FIU to sign MoU with agencies to check blackmoney
New Delhi: The Financial Intelligence Unit, which is tasked with looking into suspicious financial transactions, will sign MoUs with various agencies to ensure better exchange of information to check blackmoney and tax evasion.
The MoU will enable FIU and the concerned agency to exchange suspicious transaction reports (STRs) relating to cases of crime, money laundering, tax and duty evasions, official sources said.
These MoUs will be inked with Directorate General of Central Excise Intelligence (DGCEI), Directorate General of Revenue Intelligence (DGRI) and Enforcement Directorate among others, they said.
The FIU, tasked with analysing and disseminating information relating to dubious financial transactions, had last month signed MoU with the CBI.
The MoU, signed by CBI Director Ranjit Sinha on May 16, will facilitate better exchange of information and improve the anti-money laundering regime (under Prevention of Money laundering Act) as per international standards, the sources said.
This latest agreement has replaced the previous MOU signed between the two agencies in April, 2010.
"The FIU and CBI will assist each other by sharing intelligence and information about persons suspected to be involved in scheduled offences under the PMLA, and the list of offenders prosecuted by the CBI from time to time.
"Under the MoU, the two agencies will exchange suspicious transaction reports relating to suspected cases of crime as well as cash transaction reports. Both parties are committed to keep the shared information confidential," according to an official statement issued by CBI after signing the agreement.
The FIU has already signed an MoU with Income Tax department to facilitate easy exchange of tax-evasion related information between the two agencies.
Over 700 suspicious transactions reports have been shared with the CBI since 2006-07.
An STR involves a transaction of Rs 10 lakh and above, which gives rise to a reasonable ground of suspicion that it may involve the proceeds of crime including drug trafficking and illegal money.
The MoU is desirable for understanding of mutual rights and obligations, the sources said. After entering into the agreement, the agencies are bound to ensure data protection and confidentiality.
These agreements will add to cohesion among various financial intelligence agencies to check proceeds of crime and blackmoney among others, they said.
Sources said that FIU is in talks with other agencies to ensure early signing of MoU.
The FIU has shared 32,098 STRs with CBDT, 1,443 with DGCEI, 904 with DGRI and 272 with Central Economic Intelligence Bureau (CEIB) among others between January and March this year.
The sharing of STRs and subsequent follow up have resulted in detection and recovery of several hundred crores being evaded by tax dodgers, the sources added.