In a major revelation, the Income Tax Department on Saturday accused Bollywood actor Sonu Sood of financial irregularities worth over Rs 250 crore by way of unutilised charitable funds, bogus contracts and circular transactions with one of his partner companies, and diverting funds to evade taxes, officials said.

The disclosures came after IT sleuths’ swoop for two days on some 28 premises in Mumbai, Delhi, Lucknow, Jaipur, Kanpur and Gurugram in one of the biggest such investigative actions on any actor or entities linked with him. The operations continue. In a rare official statement, the Income Tax Department, without naming him, said that Sood evaded tax worth Rs 20 crore so far, besides listing other alleged wrongdoings emerging in its probe.

An NGO, ‘SOOD Charity Foundation’, launched by the actor in July 2020 collected donations of Rs 18.94 crore till date of which it spent only Rs 1.90 crore towards relief measures (for migrants), and the rest lies in the bank accounts. The SOOD Charity Foundation also raised another Rs 2.10 crore from abroad through a crowd-funding platform, violating provisions of the FCRA, said the department.

Raids on a Lucknow-based infrastructure firm that Sood had entered into a tie-up for a realty project brought out more financial improprieties. The IT Department said the group was involved in generating fake bills of subcontracts to siphon off funds worth around Rs 65 crore.



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By Marie

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