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‘Forced to Drop Sensitive Case’: Tax Officer Accuses CBDT Chief

In an unprecedented complaint against the Chairman of the Central Board of Taxes (CBDT) Pramod Chandra Mody, a senior tax official, Alka Tyagi, has alleged that she was asked to drop proceedings in a “sensitive case” involving “serious allegations”.

In the letter which was addressed to Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman on 21 June, Tyagi has alleged that the CBDT Chairman admitted that he had “secured” his position at the top office after a successful search against an Opposition leader and that he could take “unfettered action against some officers”, reported The Indian Express.

The tenure of CBDT Chairman was extended by a year on 29 August, two months after the alleged irregularities were highlighted.

Also Read: Govt Extends CBDT Chairperson Mody’s Tenure by 1 Year

According to the daily, the letter, which was also sent to the Prime Minister’s Office, the Central Vigilance Commission (CVC) and Cabinet Secretary, Tyagi alleged that she was under “tremendous pressure” from Mody to close the contentious file.

The cases being handled by Tyagi’s office included: Deepak Kochhar-ICICI Bank Case, notices sent to members of Mukesh Ambani’s family under the Black Money Act, the Jet Airways Case among others, the daily reported.

Earlier this month, Tyagi had reported a break-in her office and submitted a complaint to SK Gupta, principal chief commissioner.

‘Pressure to Close File,’ Alleges Tyagi

Tyagi has alleged that she was informed in the last week of April/early May 2019 that the proceeding against the “assesses” had to be dropped by the end of May.

“This direction was shocking but it was conveyed repeatedly, despite the difficulty I expressed to him,” the complaint read.

Tyagi has claimed that she was given instructions by Mody that no record should show his linkage to this “sensitive case”. She also goes on to say in her complaint that it was difficult to convince the chairman that the case couldn’t be dropped as failing to take action after such information was received could jeopardise the dealing officer’s career and initiate vigilance proceedings.

Also Read: EC Calls CBDT Chairman, Revenue Secretary to Discuss I-T Raids

Tyagi Alleges Old Case Against Her Used for Blackmail

Tyagi was the Chief Commissioner of Income Tax (Unit 2) in Mumbai when she wrote the nine-page complaint letter. She was due to a posting of Principal Chief Commissioner of Income Tax was moved to the National Academy of Direct Taxes in Nagpur as Principal Director General of Income Tax (Training ) on Thursday, according to the daily.

Tyagi has alleged that Mody is using an old vigilance case, in which she was cleared, against her as a “weapon of blackmail” to stall her posting.

She has also accused Mody of manufacturing complaints against the officers who won’t toe his line. According to her complaint, she was once called by Mody for an odd hour meeting at his North Block office, a request which was ignored by her.

Complaint Details Pending Vigilance Inquiry Against Tyagi

Tyagi, who is an IRS officer of 1984 batch and has spent 11 years of her career outside the I-T Department, has also detailed a pending “vigilance inquiry pertaining to banking transactions linked to her family”.

According to the complaint, the matter began in 2016 by ED into large transactions in the accounts of her family members, for which she was a signatory. Tyagi has mentioned that after a detailed enquiry by ED, CBDT conducted an “exhaustive” enquiry and and found nothing on her.

The case was transferred to the CBI which too found no violation on her.

(With inputs from The Indian Express)

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