New Delhi: Come 2017, and the Income Tax department is preparing to serve notices on all those now depositing money in banks that is disproportionate to their known sources of income.
Informed sources said the department will start serving the notices just after December 30 -- the deadline set by the central government to deposit and exchange the demonetised Rs 500 and 1,000 notes.
These high-value notes ceased to be legal tender from November 8 midnight, only a few hours after Prime Minister Narendra Modi made a dramatic announcement about their spiking.
The Income Tax department started preparing the notices from November 10 -- when banks opened across the country after a day's closure following the demonetisation announcement.
The notices will go to those who have deposited or received cash in their accounts more than double their income, a highly placed Finance Ministry source told IANS, adding that the department had deputed special teams to track such account holders across India.
The concerned staff is reportedly working till late into the night every day, using extra manpower. People have been hired for the job at Rs 1,000 a day, the sources said.
Where it suspects fishy deposits, the Income Tax department will also monitor the last six months of inflow and outflow in these accounts.
The government fears that many people are putting their undeclared income in the Pradhan Mantri Jan-Dhan Yojana bank accounts of their employees and touts.
These accounts were opened with zero balance -- for the poor.
Separate teams have been told to track the source of income of suspected bank account holders, the sources said.
Also being tracked -- using an array of secret information -- are cash dealings and property purchases by suspicious account holders.
The transactions under the tax lens include cash deposits of Rs 2.5 lakh or more in a savings bank account and sale or purchase of immovable property valued at Rs 30 lakh or more.
"Those who have exchanging demonetised currencies on a regular basis may face Income Tax heat," an official said.
(Rajnish Singh can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org)