Tax consultants getting frantic calls for bailout

NEW DELHI: Since the November 8 night, tax practitioners’ phones haven’t stopped ringing. Frantic calls from their clients seeking advice on what they should do with cash lying was the key query.

“My phone has been continuously ringing… I switched off the phone after a while,” said a tax practitioner with a leading tax advisory firm.

Their queries are focused on how to handle the hoarded cash or unaccounted money that came through various means.

The sudden announcement demonetising Rs 500 andRs 1,000 notes on November 8 left them rattled. “Some wanted to know what they should do with the cash left by grandmother in locker,” he said. Most were rattled looking for a solution to the problem of plenty that was confronting them.

“A number of clients who had ignored suggestions with regard to the Income Disclosure Scheme (IDS 2016) are now coming back,” he added. Those running businesses, he said, are looking for entities that had cash in hand having booked sales prior to November 8 or looking to distribute funds to their employees. But those that appear most troubled are from the government sector, another tax practitioner said.

“These are more concerned and worried,” he said, adding that they want someone else to take upon that cash and tackle it.

“They are scared that if they directly engage with those carrying out conversion to gold or forex, they would be exposing themselves and wanted the tax practitioners to carry out the dealing on their own.”

Some are even trying to dispose of cash where ever they can by spending at places that are readily accepting the demonetised currency. “Most want to just get rid of the cash even if it means burning it,” tax practitioner said