n what is being labelled as the 'Paradise Papers' the International
Consortium of Investigative Journalists (ICIJ), in partnership with 96
news organisations, has revealed how two firms — Appleby in Bermuda and
Asiaciti Trust in Singapore — helped high-profile individuals and
corporations avoid paying taxes by setting up offshore entities.
million-plus files that were leaked show that as many as 714 Indian
companies and individuals are linked to offshore entities set up in tax
havens, according to The Indian Express.
of 180 countries, India ranks 19th in terms of the number of names to
have cropped up in the Paradise Papers. Politicians, celebrities and
listed companies figure on the list:
Ashok Gehlot, Sachin Pilot, Vayalar Ravi
registered by Appleby Mauritius had invested in an Indian firm that is
at the centre of an investigation by the CBI and the Enforcement
Directorate in connection with the Rajasthan Ambulance “scam”.
One of the founders of the firm is the son of Congress leader and former Union minister for Overseas Affairs Vayalar Ravi.
police complaint had earlier named former Rajasthan chief minister
Ashok Gehlot, former finance minister P Chidambaram's son Karti,
and former Union minister Sachin Pilot.
YS Jagan Mohan Reddy
documents have revealed fresh financial links in the ongoing CBI case
involving YSR Congress Chief YS Jagan Mohan Reddy, who was earlier in
trouble in connection with disproportionate assets.
Minister of State for Civil Aviation Jayant Sinha had worked with
Omidyar Network as Managing Director in India and Omidyar Network had
invested in a US company D.Light Design that has a subsidiary in Cayman
Islands, according to a report based on the Paradise Papers
Sinha said the transactions were not done for any "personal purpose".
addition to Vayalar Ravi, M Veerappa Moily is the other UPA minister in
the limelight in connection with the Paradise Papers. According to The Indian Express, Moily’s son Harsha started a firm which received investments from subsidiaries a company linked to tax havens. Veerappa Moily was the Union minister for Corporate Affairs at the time.
BJP MP RK Sinha
Sabha MP Ravindra Kishore Sinha, founder of a private security firm
Security and Intelligence Services (SIS) which went public earlier this
year, is the head of an organisation which has two offshore companies,
according to The Indian Express.
"These matters have been
fully disclosed in the various filings with SEBI as a part of the IPO
of Security and Intelligence Services (India) Limited,” said Sinha.
has revealed Bollywood actor Amitabh Bachchan's shareholding in a
Bermuda-based company. The actor was also named in connection with the
Panama Papers in 2015.
Paradise Papers have also shed light on the business dealings of
Manyata, the wife of Bollywood actor Sanjay Dutt. The Indian Express
reports that Manyata, whose real name is Dilnashin, held positions in a
company registered in the Bahamas. A spokesperson for Manyata said the
necessary disclosures were made to the income tax authorities.
Companies and Business Figures
files also revealed that when former Indian liquor magnate
Vijay Mallya, who is on the run from Indian authorities at the moment,
sold his United Spirits Limited India to Diageo, the latter approached a
London-based law firm to implement a massive restructuring exercise
aimed at simplifying the complex corporate structure Mallya had created.
documents go on to reveal that close to USD 1.5 billion of USL
Holdings’ loans, which were funnelled into four subsidiary companies in
the form of debt, were waived off by Diageo.
data also includes thousands of documents on Delhi-based GMR Group. The
Income Tax Department had raided the group last year and had uncovered
an attempt of avoid tax via a network of 28 offshore entities which were
setup by Appleby.
Data from Appleby also includes names of Indian
companies and business individuals such as Jindal Steel, Apollo Tyres,
Havells, the Hindujas, Emaar MGF, Videocon, Hiranandani Group and DS
NOTE: ICIJ, which sifted through the data, published
the following disclaimer with regards to information provided: “There
are legitimate uses for offshore companies, foundations and trusts. We
do not intend to suggest or imply that any persons. companies or other
entities included in the list have broken the law or otherwise acted