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ITRs of HNI buyers of Nirav jewellery under lens

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New Delhi : The Income Tax Department has decided to re-assess the ITRs of over 50 high net-worth individuals (HNIs) who purchased costly jewellery from firms owned by absconding diamantaire Nirav Modi, official sources said on Friday.

They said the taxman decided to initiate the step after a number of people, it sent notices asking them to explain the source of income for purchase of the jewellery, denied any cash payment made by them to Nirav Modi’s firms.

Officials said the department has gathered documents that indicate that these select buyers of high-end jewellery had split the total payment for diamond jewellery, by paying a part through cheque or card (debit/credit) and the rest in cash. In reply to the tax notices, most of the people said that they did not make any cash payment, but this version does not corroborate with the data obtained by the IT Department vis-a-vis the sales made by the firms of Nirav Modi. It has been found from the company books that payments were received after splitting them into cash and cheque/card transactions, hence it is essential to re-assess the income tax returns of these over 50 people beginning from the 2014-15 assessment year. They said if discrepancies of concealed cash payments are found, which in some cases may be in several lakhs, HNIs will be charged for tax evasion and subsequent action will be initiated.