Free Press Journal

IT raids at Raghav Bahl’s office, home end after 24 hours, he issues statement, says all assets were declared in past returns


The Income Tax department ended its surveys over alleged tax evasion at the residence and office premises of Raghav Bahl, founder of news portal ‘The Quint’, after over 24 hours. According to the officials, a team reached the residence of Bahl — the former head of Network18 TV — in Noida in Uttar Pradesh on Thursday morning around 6 am left on Friday morning at around 7.30 am.

In response, Raghav Bahl, has come up with his statement on the issue and he took to Twitter to explain the facts regarding the raids. The statement was issued by Raghav Bahl, Ritu Kapur and Quintillon Media group in which they explain about each recovery, deal which was confronted during the raids by IT officials.

The statement mentioned that the recovery of 3.56 lakh in cash, and Rs 33 lakh in jewelry from Bahl’s grandmother’s cupboard were duly assessed assets and declared in past returns. The statement also mentioned that the flats owned by Bahl in London were part of their investment as their children have graduated from a University in London. The assets were declared in their income tax filings.

The statement also said that ‘The Quint’ group also shared proper documents with IT officials related to sale of Network 18 shares to Reliance group in 2014. They also gave officials access to past emails on this subject. The statement also gave clarifications to deals related to BloombergQuint JV and Viacom 18 JV. Have a look at the statement below.

After the raid, the Editors Guild expressed concern over the government action, saying “motivated income tax searches and surveys” will undermine media freedom. The Guild noted that Bahl had to warn the officials that if they tried to touch anything not relevant to tax issues, he “shall seek extremely strong recourse”. In a note to the Editors Guild, Bahl had said The Quint was a “fully tax compliant entity” and would provide all access to all appropriate financial documents.

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