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Govt will go extra mile to meet Falciani if he wants: SIT chief

business Updated: Nov 03, 2015 23:28 IST
Sanjib Kr Baruah

File photo of Herve Falciani, a French citizen and former employee of HSBC Private Bank in Geneva. (AFP Photo)

Justice (retired) MB Shah, chairperson of the Special Investigation Team (SIT) on black money, has said that if HSBC whistleblower Herve Falciani wants, the government will go the extra mile to meet him wherever he wants.

Falciani is facing charges in Switzerland of leaking details of bank account holders in HSBC’s Geneva branch.

“If he is prepared to give a statement to the Indian government, then our officials can meet him wherever he wants. And if he doesn’t want to share information with the government, he can do it with the SIT,” Shah told HT.

Falciani on Monday said that he was willing to “cooperate” with investigative agencies in their black money probe if he was promised “protection”.

The SIT on black money reports to the Supreme Court.

Terming as “incorrect” Falciani’s claim that a “lot of information” on illicit funds is lying unused by Indian authorities, Shah said: “We are keen to find out the whereabouts of black money going out from India and the names of the persons. But then we do not have the entire information”.

On Falciani’s charges of Indian authorities not responding to his information, Shah said: “Falciani is being incorrect. Indian government officials have gone and met him abroad. We have also offered him a reward for his cooperation but he has stopped responding to our communications”.

Falciani, who gave the list of bank account holders to the French government, is reported to have said that India was given only 2 MB of the 200 GB of data—“just the tip of the iceberg”.