The British broadcaster BBC has informed the income-tax department that it would like to modify some of its prior income that may have been underreported during the required filing of returns for its activities in India.
The development takes place in the wake of the tax department’s three-day survey of the organisation’s Delhi offices in February, which was conducted as part of an inquiry into possible tax cheating.
However, according to I-T sources, the alleged BBC transmission has “no legal value” unless it pays the required taxes.
Additionally, they declined to give an estimate of the potential tax avoided or evaded by the corporation, stating that their investigation was ongoing.
The tax department’s administrative body, the Central Board of Direct Taxes (CBDT), stated that it does not comment on specific instances.
In response to PTI’s inquiries in this regard, the company stated that it continues to work with the tax authorities.
“The BBC is and will remain completely compliant with the inquiries of the Indian tax authorities. The procedure is still proceeding, and its completion will take time. Naturally, the BBC takes its tax obligations very seriously, according to a BBC spokesperson.
The BBC group’s income and profits were “not commensurate” with the scope of their operations in India, according to a statement released by the CBDT shortly after the survey operation. It also claimed that tax had not been paid on some remittances made by the BBC group’s foreign entities.
The survey, according to the CBDT, revealed that “despite substantial consumption of content in various Indian languages (apart from English), the income/profits shown by various group entities (of the BBC) are not commensurate with the scale of operations in India.”
According to the CBDT, “the department gathered several pieces of evidence pertaining to the operation of the organisation that indicate that tax has not been paid on certain remittances that have not been disclosed as income in India by the foreign entities of the group.”
The Enforcement Directorate (ED), a different government agency, is also looking into the news outlet for potential foreign exchange offences. Under the auspices of FEMA, the ED is conducting its investigation.