- In raids conducted by the officials, irregularities worth crores of rupees were discovered
- According to the officials conducting the raids, company officials have been unable to justify a discrepancy of about Rs. 300 crores
- Both are yet to respond to the charges against them
During searches at different spots linked to actor Tapsee Pannu, filmmaker Anurag Kashyap, and his partners who formed the now-defunct production house Phantom Films, the income tax department discovered discrepancies and income manipulation, the department said on Thursday. According to the IT department, there was also a significant suppression in revenue in comparison to actual box office collections.
Officials gave details about the searches and said the production house staff was unable to justify a discrepancy of around 300 crores.
Officials also stated that they discovered evidence of manipulation and undervaluation of Phantom Films share transactions among film directors and shareholders, with a tax implication of approximately 350 crores. They also said they recovered evidence of the leading actress’s cash receipts worth Rs. 5 crores.
Further investigation is ongoing, according to officials, who also said that raids are still being carried out.
The income tax raided Anurag Kashyap, Taapsee Pannu Mumbai homes on Wednesday morning. And ever since the raids, several searches have been conducted across various locations.
According to a government statement, the searches were conducted across 28 locations in Mumbai and Pune on Wednesday as part of a tax evasion investigation into Phantom Films. Property linked to Shibhasish Sarkar, CEO of Reliance Entertainment, and executives of celebrity and talent management firms KWAN and Exceed were also raided. Seven bank lockers were discovered during the search and have been put under restraint, according to the release.
Some Phantom Films employees were also searched, including director-producer Vikramaditya Motwane, producer Vikas Bahl, and producer-distributor Madhu Mantena, who worked for the company until it was dissolved in 2018.
Income tax officials questioned both Pannu and Kashyap, who are currently shooting in Pune. In the upcoming film “Dobaara,” they are collaborating.
Opposition parties have slammed the raids. The raids, according to Congress leader Rahul Gandhi, are being carried out against pro-farmer activists.
In his tweet, he used three traditional Hindi idioms to express what he thinks they mean in the current context: “Ungliyon pe nachana,” “Bheegi billi banna,” and “Khisiyani billi khamba noche.”
Nawab Malik, the leader of the Nationalist Congress Party (NCP), shared similar thoughts. This, according to his cabinet colleague and Congress leader Ashok Chavan, is nothing new.
However, government ministers denied that the raids on Kashyap and Pannu were related to their remarks, which have been seen as critical of the BJP at times.
On Wednesday at a press conference, Union Minister Prakash Javadekar said, “This is too much. Investigativing agencies conduct investigations based on reliable evidence, and the case is then brought before the courts.”
Pannu’s most recent tweet was on March 1, in which she expressed her displeasure with the Supreme Court’s questioning of a man accused of repeated rape about his willingness to marry the woman. Kashyap, on the other hand, hasn’t been active on Twitter recently. During the anti-CAA protests last year, he paid visits to Jawaharlal Nehru University (JNU) and Shaheen Bagh.