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Business News/ Money / Personal Finance/  I-T Surveys at BBC: What is a ‘survey’ and how is it different from a tax ‘raid’?
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I-T Surveys at BBC: What is a ‘survey’ and how is it different from a tax ‘raid’?

The Income Tax Department recently conducted a survey at the BBC Offices in Delhi and Mumbai as part of its investigation into alleged irregularities in foreign payments.

New Delhi, Feb 15 (ANI): Media persons stand outside the BBC office where the survey is being conducted by Income Tax officials for the second consecutive day, in New Delhi on Wednesday. (ANI Photo) (Ayush Chopra)Premium
New Delhi, Feb 15 (ANI): Media persons stand outside the BBC office where the survey is being conducted by Income Tax officials for the second consecutive day, in New Delhi on Wednesday. (ANI Photo) (Ayush Chopra)

The Income Tax (I-T) Department recently carried out “surveys" at the BBC Offices in Delhi and Mumbai, as part of its investigation into alleged irregularities in foreign payments.

The action is seen as an upshot of a documentary released by the British Broadcaster that allegedly portrays Narendra Modi, the Prime Minister of India, in the negative light.

The matter is being investigated under different provisions of the Income Tax Act, 1961 and the authorities claim that this is not a raid, as claimed by the sceptics, instead a survey.

The officials of the department are reported to have visited the office to verify certain documents and seized mobile phones of some of the members of the staff.

The BBC has said that it is cooperating with the investigation and will provide any information requested. So, what exactly is a survey and how is it different from the much talked-about income tax raid? Here we explain the two terms:

What is an income tax survey?

An income tax survey is an official investigation conducted by the Income Tax Department to gather information about a taxpayer's income, expenses, and assets. The purpose of an income tax survey is to ensure compliance with the provisions of the Income Tax Act, 1961, and to detect any instances of tax evasion.

During an income tax survey, tax officials may visit the premises of a taxpayer to conduct a physical verification of the assets and books of accounts.

They may also question the taxpayer and any other persons who may have relevant information about the taxpayer's income and expenses.

How is an income tax survey different from a raid?

A raid is an unannounced visit by tax officials to a taxpayer’s premises for the purpose of verifying the information provided in the tax return, checking for any undisclosed income or undeclared assets, and/or to take possession of records.

An income tax survey, on the other hand, is a more formal process where tax officials contact taxpayers and ask them to provide information about their income and assets. A survey does not involve any physical inspection of the taxpayer's premises or documents and does not involve the seizure of any documents.

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Deepika Chelani
A business media enthusiast. She covers personal finance beat for LiveMint.
Catch all the Business News, Market News, Breaking News Events and Latest News Updates on Live Mint. Download The Mint News App to get Daily Market Updates.
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Published: 16 Feb 2023, 09:34 AM IST
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