Vibrant Gujarat deal leads to Income Tax inquiry

Posted By: Pti
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Gandhinagar, Mar : The Income Tax department has initiated an inquiry into around 8,000 MoUs signed by several investors and the state government at this year's high profile Vibrant Gujarat Summit(VGS) to bring in an anticipated Rs 21 lakh crore investment.

Minister of State for Industries Saurabh Patel while revealing the IT decision in the state Assembly today blamed Congress for this and asked why Gujarat--which is ruled by BJP--is being targeted by the Centre as a "special case". The summit was touted by the state government as a big success for Chief Minister Narendra Modi.

"We have received a letter from the Income Tax department seeking information about all the memoranda of understanding (MoUs) signed during the VGS 2011," Patel told the house.

Details of VGS held in 2009 too have been sought, he said.

Patel alleged that this was proof that Opposition Congress was creating hurdles in Gujarat''s progress.

I-T department''s letter states that an inquiry in connection with the VGS 2011 is pending, and "the details of the MoUs signed by various corporate entities with the Government of Gujarat need to be examined".

The letter, dated February 17, signed by Deputy Director (investigations) Anurag Sharma, further says the inquiry is being conducted under section 131 (1A) of the Income Tax Act.

"It is unfortunate that because of the attitude of Leader of the Opposition (Shaktisinh Gohil) and his constant complaints to the Centre, the I-T department has sent us a letter," Patel told reporters after coming out of the Assembly.

"I want to ask the Central government, has it sent such letters with regard to the investment proposals in all the states, or has Gujarat been taken as a special case," Patel said.

When asked if the state had replied to the I-T letter, Patel said, "We will get into action now."

"The country and the world... all have appreciated the success of VGS 2011. It is unfortunate that I-T department of the country has initiated an inquiry and asked the state to furnish details of MoUs and investors where investment above Rs 1000 crore was pledged," he said.

"This is injustice to the state and the people of Gujarat," the minister added.

As many as 7,936 MoUs, drawing investment to the tune of Rs 20.83 lakh crore, were signed by the state government at the VGS 2011, held on January 12-13.


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