Wednesday, 22 April 2009

Someone is not telling the whole story!!

RG says, Quoted from India-today Article

Launching a scathing attack on the BJP's prime ministerial candidate L.K. Advani, Gandhi said: "Why did Advani not remember to bring back the alleged black money for even once during the five years of the BJP-led NDA rule and why was he raising this during (the) elections."

This statement is contrary to some of the details that everyone else is talking about. Is it that he has not kept pace with changes or he has not seen the latest reports?

It seems Government of Germany had succeeded in obtaining names of persons who had stashed money in the LGT Bank in Lichtenstein sometime last year which actually started this.

Quoting from a Business world article

To appreciate the implications of this[G20 communiqué], it is important to know the background. Swiss banks are obliged by law to extend a very high degree of bank-client confidentiality to all their clients, both Swiss and foreign. Any banker who reveals details of his clients’ affairs to unauthorized third parties is committing a criminal offense in Switzerland.

But this bank-client confidentiality has never been 100% absolute, and Swiss legislation makes absolutely clear what it protects and what it does not protect. It poses, for example, no obstacle whatsoever to a criminal investigation.

One characteristic of Swiss law is that it distinguishes between tax evasion and tax fraud. Submitting an incomplete tax return, for example, would be tax evasion and is handled through administrative measures, including severe fines if necessary.

So, despite some foreign media reports, tax evasion is not legal in Switzerland; it merely is not a criminal offense. Anyone found to be illegally evading his tax obligations in Switzerland faces severe financial penalties.

The international implication is that Switzerland has traditionally offered international assistance in criminal tax cases that have elements of fraud, but not of evasion. By agreeing to adopt the standard on the exchange of information set out in Article 26 of the OECD’s Model Tax Convention, Switzerland will now extend administrative assistance to cover all tax offenses, including tax evasion.

Also this is a recent change and more so due to recession that rest of the world has started putting pressure on Tax havens for information.

Swiss banking giant UBS agreed last month to pay $780 million and turn over once-secret records to settle a case brought by the U.S. Justice Department. (By Alessandro Della Bella -- Associated Press)

As recent as couple of weeks back G20 Summit has taken up to cause to and have mentioned the tax havens in their communiqué. Even MMS was past of that summit and Cong says that G20 was not the right forum to raise this issue.

In an article in The New Indian Express Arun Shourie has thrown up some more details on this. Click on the link to read this further


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