The Special Investigation Team (SIT) on black money has recommended the central government to cap the cash holding limit at Rs one crore instead of its earlier suggestion of Rs 20 lakh.
The SIT has also recommended that the entire amount found in seizures crossing that limit should go to the government treasury, Justice (retired) M B Shah, who heads the SIT on black money, told The Dispatch on Thursday.
The latest recommendations come after the earlier suggested limits of Rs 15 lakh and Rs 20 lakh were found to be too low.
“We have recommended that the cap on cash holding should be Rs one crore. We have also recommended that the entire amount seized above the cash holding limit of Rs one crore should go to the government,” Justice Shah said.
As per the existing rules, an offender can retrieve seized cash by paying 40 per cent income tax and penalty.
The recommendations have come after huge amounts of cash were seized in recent search operations by tax authorities in the country.
The Income Tax sleuths had on July 16 searched over 20 premises of a firm engaged in highway construction and its associate companies in Tamil Nadu and seized Rs 160 crore cash and 100 kg of gold.
“Look at the amount of cash that is being seized, Rs 160 crore… Rs 177 crore…,” Justice Shah said.
“The amount of money being seized is so high that now we are of the opinion that Rs 20 lakh limit will not do,” he said.
Justice Shah had earlier suggested the cash holding limit to be at Rs 15 lakh. However, later he had recommended raising the limit to Rs 20 lakh.
The SIT was formed by the central government in 2014 on directions of Supreme Court.
The panel has been continuously suggesting anti-black money measures to the government.