Can't make info regarding accounts abroad public: Mukherjee
Rejecting Opposition demands, government today refused to make public information received from foreign countries with regard to Indian account holders but expressed readiness to issue an elaborate document on the problem.delhi Updated: Dec 14, 2011 18:25 IST
Rejecting Opposition demands, government on Wednesday refused to make public information received from foreign countries with regard to Indian account holders but expressed readiness to issue an elaborate document on the problem.
Finance minister Pranab Mukherjee told Lok Sabha that revealing the information received from other countries would violate the understanding with a sovereign government and could hurt the Indian businesses as some of them could be genuine investors abroad.
Mukherjee said no Member of Parliament figures in the list of account holders abroad that he had received.
He was replying to a debate on adjournment motion on blackmoney moved by BJP leader LK Advani which was later defeated by voice vote.
Samajwadi Party staged a walkout.
Mukherjee said the government has received 36,000 pieces of information.
"If I publish it, same country will say you violated theaAgreement and we will not share information in future... We will dry up our source of information," the minister argued.
Rejecting the Opposition charge of "inaction" or "lagging behind", he said the government would prefer to go after those having illegal accounts abroad rather than publicising details as the account holders could even withdraw money.
"Should I publicise or go and seize it... How is intelligence collected? There is an element of surprise," he said.