No official estimate on black money, says Jaitley

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Finance Minister Arun Jaitley today said there is no official estimate on black money and a study commissioned by the government to ascertain the amount are yet to be completed.

Jaitley also informed the Lok Sabha that "sustained efforts" to obtain information about Indians having black money stashed abroad have resulted in levy of taxes and penalty as well as launching of prosecution in appropriate cases.

"There is no official estimate of the government regarding amount of the black money stashed inside and outside the country," the Finance Minister said in a written reply.

The government has commissioned studies to ascertain unaccounted income and wealth both within and outside the country.

The study being "separately and independently" carried out by National Institute of Public Finance and Policy (NIPFP), National Council of Applied Economic Research (NCEAR) and National Institute of Financial Management (NIFM) are "yet to be completed," Jaitley said.

The study was constituted in March 2011.

The government has also constituted a Special Investigation Team (SIT) under the Chairmanship of Justice M B Shah, former Judge of Supreme Court, on black money vide a notification issued on May 29.

The Finance Minister said the work of SIT is in progress. The notification does not specify any timeline for the SIT to submit its report.

To another query regarding non-performing assets of PSU banks, he said they recovered Rs 33,486 crore and wrote off Rs 34,620 crore during 2013-14.

Banks have been asked to give more focused monitoring of NPAs and recovery, he said.

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