New Delhi : Delhi government has alleged that Siti Cable Network Limited, an Essel Group Company, indulged in a “major entertainment tax fraud” and directed it to pay Rs 33.12 crore as its outstanding entertainment tax for two years, along with interest and penalty within 15 days.
According to the government, the assessment of the Multi System Operator (MSO) company providing digital cable services in the national capital has revealed that it was indulging in “major entertainment tax fraud since April 2013”.
“It has been found that this company has committed a serious illegal act of tax evasion by duping the government despite having collected the amount in the name of taxes from its innocent customers,” government said in a statement.
It also said that this company, through its local cable operators, has been collecting entertainment tax from 5,36,616 (five lakh thirty six thousand six hundred and sixteen) customers at the rate of Rs 20 per month.
In the financial year 2013-14, SITI Cable has been found to have collected around Rs 13 crore in the name of entertainment tax from its customers. However, it only deposited Rs 4.63 crore as entertainment tax for this financial year, government said.
“It is clear that this company simply pocketed the remaining Rs 8.32 crore which should have been deposited on a monthly basis in the government exchequer,” it said
“Taking cognizance of the fraud, the Delhi government has levied a 100 % penalty of Rs 8.32 crore and an interest of Rs 3.06 crore under the relevant provisions of the Delhi Entertainments and Betting Tax Act 1996.
“The complete assessment, including additional tax, penalty and interest for the financial year 2013-14, which this company now has to pay to the government stands at Rs 19.71 crore,” government said.
Similarly, it has been found that SITI Cable continued “tax evasion” during the next financial year of 2014-15 also. The government has assessed the tax, interest and penalty for 2014-15 at Rs 13.41 crore.
SITI Cable has been directed to pay a total of Rs 33.12 crore to the government till 22nd April.
A senior official of the government said that they are also examining the records of other MSOs providing cable services in the national capital to ensure there are no similar tax frauds.