Not all Indian money in Swiss banks is black

Arvind Kejriwal alleged that Rs 6,000 crore black money was parked by Indians in Swiss banks. This figures does not tally with BJP leader LK Advani`s who alleged that Rs 35 lakh crore were stashed.

Ahmedabad: Activist-turned-politician Arvind Kejriwal has alleged that Rs 6,000 crore black money was parked by Indians in Swiss banks. However, his figures do not tally with that of BJP leader LK Advani who during the 2009 Lok Sabha elections, had alleged that a staggering Rs 35 lakh crore were stashed away by Indians in foreign banks.

The reason why figures quoted by Kejriwal, Advani and other leaders for black money of Indian origin parked in Swiss banks vary is that the leaders’ allegations are not based on reliable information.

Data available with DNA suggests that at the end of 2011, the total Indian money in all banks of Switzerland was Rs 11,673 crore.

According to the Swiss National Bank (SNB) —Switzerland’s central bank — the total Indian money in various banks (domicile and foreign) at the end of 2011, was Rs 11,673 crore. This includes Rs 316 crore as savings and term deposit money.

One must also keep in mind that all the Indian money kept in Swiss banks is not black money. In a financially integrated world with firms operating at the global level, companies need to have accounts in international banks.

The SNB releases country-wise data on liabilities towards customers in the form of savings and deposits in December every year. DNA is in possession of data for the years 2002 to 2011.

The amounts invested in Swiss banks include those for fiduciary business. It means the money is deposited in the bank for investment based on trust.

In simpler terms, fund managers and advisors will invest the money on behalf of beneficiaries for a return.

The 10-year data reveals that the amount in savings and term deposits has shown 69% growth from Rs186 crore in 2002 to Rs316 crore in 2011.

On the other hand, the data on total Indian investments shows large volatility. From Rs 10,647 crore in 2002, the investment increased to Rs 28,752 crore in 2006. After that it declined to Rs 8,020 crore in 2009 before increasing to Rs 11,673 crore at the end 0f 2011.


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