The Punjab taxation department had, just a few days back, impounded 23 vehicles that were carrying goods worth lakhs of rupees without the mandatory Electronic Way Bill. The owner of the goods will have to shell out Rs 28 lakhs as tax and penalty.
The e Way Bill has been made mandatory by the government for the transportation of goods worth more than Rs 50,000. The transportation may take place within a state (intra-state) or it may also take place from one state to another (inter-state). However, traders and businessmen are still trying to find out ways how they can evade the complexities of the Bill portal and thus avoid paying the appropriate taxes.
It has been reported that after three days of this incident, the investigation wing of the tax department raided the six companies to whom the goods belonged on Monday. This action was overseen by the additional excise and taxation commissioner Kumar Saurav Raj. The inspections were conducted by different teams of the department at the premises of five companies based in Mandi Gobindgarh and one in Khanna.
The teams were led by the joint director of the investment wing, HPS Ghotra. Inspections were carried out at M/s Vardhman Adarsh Ispat Pvt Ltd, M/s Baba steel industries, M/s Friends industries, M/s Jandu steel and agro-industries as well as at M/s Bharat Ispat. The sale purchase records of all these companies and the stock in hand was also calculated for each of these firms. The investigation is still underway.
Ridiculously, panic spread in Mandi Gobindgarh after the tax officials conducted these investigations and several other factory owners shut down their factories. They may have been afraid that the investigating officers may head to their factories as well.
Joint Director, Ghotra, said,
“Today’s action is the follow up of the seizure of goods during our surprise checking of vehicles done on Thursday and Friday. We have got some evidence pointing towards massive tax evasion by some of the firms which were inspected today and as the action is still on we will be able to disclose the findings once the probe is complete.”