With the Income Tax Department (ITD) imposing a fine of Rs.436 crores ($68 million) on January 31, the total tax dues of New Delhi Television (NDTV) has risen to Rs.864 crores ($135 million). This includes the fines and penalties and interest for the trans-national tax evasion through shell companies, having been caught red-handed for the assessment year 2009-2010. It is intriguing as to how NDTV with the current market cap of less than Rs.300 crores ($47 million) is going to pay this fine of Rs.864 crores in such a cast iron case. About the only thing NDTV can do is to appeal in higher forums all the way up to the Supreme Court.
Is it because of some bleeding hearts of Lutyen’s Club who are manipulating the bureaucracy to save Prannoy Roy from a financial crunch?
Already the ITD has attached 30 percent shares of NDTV, owned by promoters Prannoy Roy and Radhika Roy owned shell company called RRPR Holdings Limited. This 30 percent shares now will fetch only around Rs.100 crores ($16 million) at the current market value. So how the Exchequer is going to get the remaining Rs.764 crores ($120 million) from this corrupt, dubious, money laundering media company?
The normal practice by the ITD is to attach the Bank accounts of NDTV and seize all revenues coming to the company account, including those in the future. Therefore it comes as a complete surprise as to why the ITD under Finance Minister Arun Jaitley is not attaching the bank accounts of NDTV in the interest of the Nation. It must do so immediately. NDTV has no other assets except for some old cameras and editing equipment and some land and buildings owned by the Roys. The ITD must act right away and attach the bank accounts of NDTV and route all future revenues or a portion of the revenues to the exchequer.
The Narendra Modi Government should stop all government advertisements to NDTV, as it owes Rs.864 crores to the exchequer. Government advertisements should not become part of the revenue stream of NDTV. The government may issue advertisements but should adjust it against the pending dues of NDTV. The advertisement rates must be set as per government’s rates. If this sound like a case of micro-management, it is. To know why read on.
Even the ITD has not arrested Prannoy Roy, although he has not appeared to five summons like the ex-Finance Minister P Chidambaram’s arrogant son Karti. If the law were to be applied, Prannoy Roy should be in jail, counting bars.
Many organisations, banks and insurance companies under the Finance Ministry are pumping advertisements into NDTV nowadays. Why is public money being given to a tax dodging company? After all NDTV’s all channels have very low viewership. Is it because of some bleeding hearts of Lutyen’s Club who are manipulating the bureaucracy to save Prannoy Roy from a financial crunch? How come Ministers working under Prime Minister Narendra Modi are backstabbing him by doing such covert operations and also by showing up at NDTV programs?
As if the Chief Economic Advisor Arvind Subramanian giving an exclusive to NDTV a few days ago is not enough, the Central Board of Direct and Excise heads Sushil Chandra and Vanaja Sarna went to NDTV studios and gave exclusive interviews. Prannoy Roy and his wife Radhika Roy were slapped a fine of Rs.30 crores ($4.7 million) each by the ITD. How dare these top Finance Ministry officials give interviews to this tax evader? In any other country, these officials will be out of a job and possibly prosecuted. What kind of message are these officers giving to honest, bold tax sleuths? Spare a thought for the chiefs of Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) and the Enforcement Directorate (ED), Alok Verma and Karnal Singh. Both of them are straight as an arrow, with a clear directive to go after the lawbreakers. But in both these departments, some meddlers tried to mess up by sneaking in questionable appointments. At this rate, even they may be asked to give exclusive interviews to the main accused Prannoy Roy! These diabolical yokels (Lutyens schemers) think that if NDTV starts airing exclusive interviews at critical moments, the viewers will come back. News flash for these illogical dreamers! Internet and Social Media will ensure that none of the smokescreens will work.
While the CBI, ED, and SEBI are going slow against NDTV, Income Tax is the only agency acting up to the mark. Even the ITD has not arrested Prannoy Roy, although he has not appeared to five summons like the ex-Finance Minister P Chidambaram’s arrogant son Karti. If the law were to be applied, Prannoy Roy should be in jail, counting bars. This decent looking, book-cooking crook should face the music of law.
The Prime Minister’s Office (PMO) should direct the Income Tax Department to attach the bank accounts of NDTV at once, to recover the Rs.864 crore dues. The nation has had enough.
- The conversion rate used in this article is 1 USD = 63.85 Rupees.
 Mr. Arvind Subramanian, why are you giving interviews to NDTV, which has committed financial frauds? Jan 30, 2018, PGurus.com
 CVC meeting minutes expose how CVC selected Asthana over the CBI Director’s objections – Nov 25, 2018, PGurus.com
 Have CBI, ED probes on NDTV frauds slowed down? Is SEBI hushing up the probe against Prannoy Roy? Jan 28, 2018, PGurus.com
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