CWG tax evasion: Govt slaps recovery notices for Rs 505 crore



New Delhi: Many private firms and government departments have been slapped with notices for recovery of over Rs 500 crore tax allegedly evaded by them while executing Commonwealth Games-related projects here.

Official sources said recovery notices for Rs 505 crore towards value-added tax (VAT) have been issued by the central government revenue department and trade and taxes authorities of the Delhi government.

The demand was raised after a multi-jurisdiction investigation team working under the Central Vigilance Commission detected Rs 1,000 crore tax evasion by the companies and government departments.

Following detection of huge tax evasion, tax departments of both Delhi and central governments have also effected recovery of Rs 94.71 crore from private firms and government bodies involved in the CWG-related works, the sources said.

The CVC team, which went into alleged irregularities in Commonwealth Games-related civic and construction projects, has found tax evasion of Rs 1,014.6 crore.

Sources said show cause notices have been issued to the firms and government departments for payment of Rs 702 crore of VAT on work contracts (TDS), Rs 228.1 crore of service tax and Rs 84.5 crore of workers welfare cess.

"The scrutiny of works or contracts related to the CWG by the CVC revealed instances of non-payment or detection of statutory taxes or cess etc. By some private companies as well as by government departments or organisation. The team is still working and efforts were on to recover the money," a CVC official said.

Vigilance Commissioner R Srikumar had told PTI in a recent interview that Rs 1,000 crore evasion was detected with the help of a multi-jurisdiction investigation platform, comprising officers from tax and other authorities, formed by CVC to look into the CWG scam.

"There have been many inquiries into this and each inquiry and investigation has proceeded to its own conclusion. One unique thing that was noticed in CVC's multi-jurisdictional inquiry was that a huge amount of tax evasion was indulged in by the many players in the scam.

"Many of these taxes, like Income Tax, Service Tax, VAT, etc were to be deducted at source. The multi-jurisdictional platform enabled us to flag tax evasion to the tune of nearly Rs 1,000 crore," Srikumar has said.

At least 9,000 publicly-funded projects were executed by 37 government departments and private companies for the mega sporting event held here between October 3-14, 2010.

Taking note of alleged irregularities, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh had in October 2010 announced establishment of a high-level committee under the chairmanship of former Comptroller and Auditor General VK Shunglu to look into the allegations of corruption.

The committee had submitted six reports pointing out acts of alleged omission and commission by officials and lack of oversight by the government. The reports are being examined by a Group of Ministers headed by Defence Minister AK Antony.

According to officials, the CVC is looking into 53 CWG graft cases involving various government civic and construction agencies. Of these, 28 were still in different stages of investigation, 13 were sent to CBI for further probe and closure report was filed in 12 others.

PTI