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Senior Income Tax Officer Arrested by CBI for Alleged Bribery

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Mumbai: The Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) has taken into custody an Income Tax Officer (ITO) named Vikas Bansal for his alleged involvement in a bribery case amounting to Rs 4 lakh. The incident revolves around the issuance of a ‘lower TDS certificate’ related to the sale of a property in Mumbai.

The complaint, which led to this arrest, stems from an application submitted on the Income Tax department’s portal seeking a ‘lower TDS certificate.’ Despite the application, no response was received from the Assessing Officer (AO) initially.

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On April 29, 2024, the complainant and their Chartered Accountant (CA) representative visited Vikas Bansal, the Assessing Officer in question, at the Income Tax Office situated in the Air India Building, Nariman Point, Mumbai. It was during this meeting that Bansal allegedly demanded a bribe equivalent to two per cent of the deal value concerning the property under consideration.

During negotiations, Bansal reduced the demanded bribe amount. The complainant, dissatisfied with this demand, subsequently reported the matter to the CBI. Following an investigation into the allegations, the CBI confirmed the veracity of the complaint.

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The central probe agency then set up a trap to apprehend Vikas Bansal in the act of accepting the bribe. During this operation, Bansal was caught accepting Rs 4 lakh, which formed part of the bribe amount he had allegedly demanded. The total bribe amount, considering the initial demand, would have been Rs 5.04 lakh, representing one per cent of the deal value of the property, which was Rs 5.04 crore.

The case revolves around the sale of a property in Byculla, Mumbai, owned by a Non-Resident Indian (NRI) who intended to sell it due to personal reasons. The necessity for a ‘lower TDS certificate’ from the income tax department in this transaction became a focal point leading to the bribery allegations against Vikas Bansal.

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