Income Tax dept searches premises of Raghav Bahl’s The Quint in a case of alleged tax evasion.
New Delhi: The Income Tax department Thursday searched the premises of media baron Raghav Bahl in connection with a case of alleged tax evasion, officials said.
Bahl, the founder of news portal The Quint and the Network18 group and a veteran journalist, said his company was a fully tax compliant entity, and would provide all access to all appropriate financial documents.
But he warned of seeking “extremely strong recourse” if the tax officials pick up or see any other mail/document which is likely to contain very serious/sensitive journalistic material.
Officials said that a team of sleuths raided the residence of Bahl in Noida early Thursday and are looking for documents and other evidence related to the case under probe, PTI reported.
It is understood that the searches are being conducted at the premises of a few other people as part of the action to probe tax evasion by a set of business professionals, the PTI report said.
“I have a matter of great concern to share with the Guild. While I was in Mumbai this morning, dozens of IT officials descended on my residence and The Quint’s office for a ‘survey’,” Bahl said in a statement to the executive of the Editors Guild of India.
“We are a fully tax compliant entity, and will provide all access to all appropriate financial documents. However, I have just spoken to the officer on my premises, one Mr Yadav, and requested him, strongly, to not try and pick up or see any other mail/document which is likely to contain very serious/sensitive journalistic material,” Bahl said.
“If they do that, then we shall seek extremely strong recourse.
“I do hope the EG will back us on this, and thereby set a precedent for any such exercise that may happen on any other journalistic entity in the future. They should also not misuse their smartphones to take unauthorised copies of this material,” Bahl said, adding that he was on his way back to Delhi.
(With PTI inputs)