Probing the alleged unaccounted funds of National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) chairman and former Chief Justice of India K G Balakrishnan’s relatives, the Income Tax (I-T) department has found that his daughter and son-in-law received money from Mumbai-based Rosy Blue India Pvt Limited.
The founder of Rosy Blue, Harshad Ramniklal Mehta, figures in the list of those who hold accounts in the LGT Bank in Liechtenstein and are under the government scanner. Mehta held stake in the Kochi IPL team.
According to a revision note prepared by I-T Deputy Commissioner (Ernakulam) Abhimanyu S Yadav earlier this year, Balakrishnan’s daughter K B Sony and son-in-law P V Sreenijan, both advocates, received a monthly “professional fee” from Rosy Blue during 2009-10. It said while both had claimed this as their professional fees, they had not rendered any service for the company.
The I-T department brought out the revision subsequent to its assessment order of 2013.
It said on receipts from Rosy Blue, Sreenijan had not denied that he had received Rs 1 lakh per month from the company. The note said Rosy Blue had not entrusted any assignment to Sony and Sreenijan, and they had not incurred any expenditure for the company. The company, apart from retaining them on its payroll, did not utilise their services, it said, adding that the receipts, therefore, could not be considered as professional fees.
The note also said Sony and Sreenijan had made “unexplained investment in land and buildings”.
Reacting to the note, Sreenijan said Rosy Blue had paid them retainer fees. “If they (the company) did not have any case in Kerala, why should I worry about that. The company paid us after deducting tax. As a legal professional, I need not look into the background of a client,’’ he said.
He said they had moved revision petitions against the penalty proceedings of the department, but the petitions were not taken up for hearing.
Stating that he has been a taxpayer since 2003, Sreenijan asked why the I-T department had not initiated any proceedings on the receipts of those who had sold the properties to him and his wife.
The assessed income of Sreenijan in 2009-10 was Rs 2.11 crore, while Sony’s was Rs 37.28 lakh.
Sources said Ashish Khetan will be the vice-chairman of the commission.