Tilaknagar industries under I-T scanner for alleged tax evasion
September, 25th 2013
Tilaknagar Industries, manufacturers of Mansion House and Senate whiskies, is under the Income-Tax department's scanner after its survey raised doubts over the mega project status claimed by the company for its Shrirampur distillery.
The company used fake bills to inflate its capital outlay for claiming the status that makes it eligible for sales tax subsidy of about Rs 250 crore, a report prepared by the I-T department in Pune says on the basis of the investigating team's inputs after the survey carried out in March.
The report, a copy of which has been reviewed by ET, says the company's chairman and managing director Amit Dahanukar admitted to bogus revenue expenses but not bogus capital expenses.
The report attributes the reluctance to admit bogus capital expenses to the fear of losing the mega project status and stresses on the need to re-evaluate the distillery as well as the machinery for which the bogus capital was booked.
Dahanukar, however, told ET: "We have given our explanation to the Income-Tax department. We have not done anything wrong. Some vested interests are making these allegations." The I-T department carried out the survey after Trio-Chem Sucrotech Engineering & Projects admitted in a survey carried out in November 2012 that it had wrongly debited huge amounts in its book of accounts and transactions with Tilaknagar Industries.
"We will initiate a probe once the I-Tax department sends its report to us. We normally go by the audited accounts of the company ," said a senior official of the department of industry on condition of anonymity.
Tilaknagar Industries is ranked among the top six players in the Indian spirits market, which has total sales of about 250 million cases a year. The company started out as a sugar manufacturer in the early 1930s, diversified into producing alcohol in mid-1970 s and emerged as a serious player in the spirits industry by the turn of the century.