Liberalised remittance scheme may have triggered Indians’ deposits in Swiss banks: Goyal

Money from India in Swiss banks sees 50% rise to over Rs 7,000 crore

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According to the Swiss National Bank (SNB), funds held by Indians directly with Swiss banks rose to Rs. 6,891r in 2017, while wealth held through fiduciaries or managers increased to Rs. 112cr.

Money parked by Indians in Swiss banks rose over 50 per cent to CHF 1.01 billion (₹ 7,000 crore) in 2017, reversing a three-year downward trend amid India's clampdown on suspected black money stashed there.

"Despite the decline, the money held by Pakistani nationals and entities remain above that of Indians, which rose by over 50 percent to CHF 1,015 million in 2017 after three consecutive years of decline", the report added.

Yashwant Sinha, former Finance Minister tweeted his criticism at the increase.

Citing media reports, the minister said that 40 per cent of the money is because of liberalised remittance scheme which was introduced by Mr. Chidambaram.

Under the LRS, an individual could remit up to Dollars 2,50,000 per year.

In a Facebook post later in the day, Union minister Arun Jaitley said, "It is only monies kept by resident Indians outside these categories (NRIs and residents who have made legal investments abroad) which become actionable".

Interestingly, the funds, described by SNB as "liabilities" of Swiss banks or "amounts due to" their clients, are the official figures disclosed by the Swiss authorities and do not indicate to the quantum of the much-debated alleged black money held by Indians there.

Demonetisation will cure India of "BLACK" money.

In a tweet, Gandhi referred to Interim Finance Minister Piyush Goyal's remarks earlier in the day about the latest data released by the Swiss National Bank that showed a rise in Indian deposits past year. India has a treaty with Switzerland, the terms of which say that the Swiss will provide all details of transactions during the 2018 calendar year in January, he added.

"We will get all the information and if anyone is found guilty of wrongdoing, the strictest action will be taken", he said.

The Congress also targeted the Prime Minister over his government's claims of putting a clampdown on back money and said Swiss bank deposits during the UPA had fallen and the same has risen by 50 per cent under the Modi government. Swiss banks themselves have previously pointed out that Indians have "few deposits" with them compared to other global financial hubs like Singapore and Hong Kong amid the stepped-up efforts to check the black money menace.

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