Relief For Anil Ambani from Bombay HC in Black Money Case

In its most recent order, the Bombay High Court directed the Income Tax Department not to take any coercive action against Reliance Group Chairman Anil Ambani under the Black Money Act.

Anil Ambani is accused of concealing more than Rs 814 crore in two Swiss bank accounts and evading tax of Rs 420 crore on this black money.

The Income Tax Department had served Anil Ambani with a show cause notice in the same case. Let us remind you that the Assessing Officer issued an assessment order under Section 10(3) of the Black Money Act, claiming that Anil Ambani possesses undeclared foreign assets.

The Bombay High Court bench of Justice SV Gangapurwala and Justice RN Laddha heard both parties’ arguments on Ambani’s petition. The Income Tax Department requested additional time to respond to Ambani’s request. Following that, the court decided to grant relief.

On August 8, 2022, Anil Ambani received a notice from the Income Tax Department. Sections 50 and 51 of the Black Money (Undisclosed Foreign Income and Assets) and Tax Imposition Act 2015 were mentioned in the notice. Rafiq Dada, Anil Ambani’s lawyer, argued in court that the show cause notice is based on baseless, clearly false, and frivolous allegations against Ambani dating back to 2006-07. The Black Money Act was never even put into effect. As a result, this Act is ineffective.

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Anil Ambani has filed a legal challenge to the provisions of the Black Money Act. In addition, he is contesting the Central Government’s notification of 01 July 2015, which allows the law to be implemented prior to its effective date.

During the hearing, Anil Ambani’s lawyer also stated that his client had appealed the assessing officer’s decision to the appellate authority. As a result, a civil suit is already pending in the case. He stated that because the civil suit is pending, the Income Tax Department cannot prosecute the criminal case.

During the hearing, the court inquired as to whether Anil Ambani had responded to the show cause notice. His lawyer responded, “Yes, the response to the notice has been given.”

During the hearing, the Income Tax Department was represented by Advocate Akhileshwar Sharma. He stated that Dada is seeking a decision under the Benami Act, whereas the department is taking action under the Black Money Act. ‘Give me some time to respond to the petition, and give them some protection as well,’ he added.

He requested more time for the next date because the affidavit had to be sent from Delhi. Following this, the court adjourned the hearing until November 17 and ordered the Income Tax Department to file an affidavit.

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