Ensure govt acts on black money,Advani urges President

“My only regret is that the follow-up of the white paper has been disappointing,” Advani said on his blog.

Written by Express News Service | New Delhi | Published: April 11, 2013 12:45 am

Registering disappointment over the lack of follow-up action by the government on the issue of black money,senior BJP leader L K Advani on Wednesday called upon President Pranab Mukherjee to ensure that the government honoured the promises made by it in a white paper tabled by him in Parliament in May 2012.

“My only regret is that the follow-up of the white paper has been disappointing,” Advani said on his blog. He said that Mukherjee,who was today “in a far more exalted position than he was when he presented his white paper”,should ensure that his promise is fulfilled by the government “both in letter and spirit”.

Advani said he was unhappy over the fact that the three premier institutions,tasked to quantify the magnitude of black money,had still not submitted their reports. He noted that not only powerful nations like the US and Germany,but even smaller countries like Nigeria,Peru and the Philippines had got back their wealth from tax havens.

In an apparent reference to latest news reports,Advani said,“We in India,on the other hand,have seen some reports about names who are supposed to have accounts in Swiss banks or such other tax havens,but have not heard of even a single paisa illegally stashed abroad having been repatriated to our country.”

Advani,who has been pursuing the issue for the past several years,recalled that he had taken it up first through a letter to Prime Minister Manmohan Singh on April 6,2008. He had pointed out in his letter that the German government had launched a massive probe against tax evaders and obtained confidential data of thousands of them.

In 2009,the US had forced Swiss banking giant UBS to disclose the names of 4,450 American clients,suspected of hiding assets in Switzerland.

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