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Congress should fulfil tax obligations instead of levelling allegations against Income Tax Department : BJP

NEW DELHI: The Congress should follow legal procedures and fulfil its tax obligations instead of levelling allegations against the Income Tax Department and the judiciary, the BJP said on Friday.

”A certain family of the Congress party believes that they should be exempted from rules and that special laws should apply to them, but it is not feasible in modern India,” BJP national spokesperson Zafar Islam said in an apparent reference to the Gandhi family.

The BJP’s reaction came after the Congress on Friday said it has received fresh notices from the I-T Department, asking it to pay Rs 1,823.08 crore, and alleged that the BJP is in ”serious violation” of tax laws for which authorities should raise a demand of more than Rs 4,600 crore from the saffron party.

The Congress also accused the ruling BJP of indulging in ”tax terrorism” to financially cripple the opposition party ahead of the Lok Sabha polls.

Hitting back, Islam said the Congress leaders are reflecting their ”frustration” by levelling allegations against the Income Tax Department and the judiciary.

”Rather than making statements in the media, the Congress should follow legal procedures and fulfil its tax obligations,” he added.

Islam said that the I-T Department was “compelled” to take action in accordance with the law as the Congress not only delayed in filing income tax returns but “also understated their income”.

”While the Congress failed to adhere to the correct procedures for filing taxes and appeal, various judicial bodies including CIT (commissioner of income tax), ITAT (Income Tax Appellate Tribunal), and Delhi High Court have consistently upheld the decisions of the Income Tax Department, dismissing the Congress’ arguments,” he said.

The Delhi High Court also criticised the Congress in this matter, he added.

Islam said, “Media statements by Rahul Gandhi, Mallikarjun Kharge and other Congress leaders lack credibility, as evidenced by the court’s rejection of the Congress’ claims.” Gandhi accused the BJP on Friday of indulging in ”tax terrorism” by misusing probe agencies and warned it, saying when the government changes, such exemplary action will be taken that no one will dare to do such things again.

Congress president Kharge accused the BJP-led Centre of misusing institutions like the Income Tax Department, ED and the CBI to subvert democracy and belittle the Constitution, and asked why is the tax department being used as a weapon to harass the principal opposition party.

He also asserted that such actions would not deter the Congress from contesting the upcoming Lok Sabha polls and vowed that his party will free the country’s institutions from the Bharatiya Janata Party’s (BJP) ”dictatorship”.

Source: Press Trust of India

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