I-T notices to election commissioner Ashok Lavasa’s wife over ‘tax evasion’
The income tax department has issued notices to Novel Singhal Lavasa, wife of election commissioner Ashok Lavasa, for alleged tax evasion, two officials aware of the developments said on Monday.
The notices seek explanations from Novel Singhal Lavasa about her income-related details when she was the director of about a dozen private companies between 2015 and 2017, the officials said. An I-T department official confirmed that the notices had been sent, but declined to elaborate on their contents.
Reacting to the I-T department’s move, Novel Singhal Lavasa said she responded to all notices received since August 5 and was cooperating with the department. “It is stated that I have paid all taxes due towards me and disclosed all income earned by me from pension, and all other sources as per Income Tax law,” she said in a statement. “It is clarified that having served as a Class I officer with the State Bank of India for 28 years and having acquired vast experience in Banking and Development, I continue to be engaged in various professional activities, including as independent director in a few companies,” she added.
The officials quoted above said the I-T department has sought more documents from her. The department has been examining her I-T returns to ascertain if her income escaped assessment in the past or something has been concealed from authorities.
Ashok recently made headlines when he disagreed with the EC decisions during this summer’s Lok Sabha polls to clear some charges of violations of the Model Code of Conduct, which regulates candidate, party and government behaviour during the elections. He recused himself from meetings on the matter after the poll watchdog refused to record his dissent in its orders.
He declined to comment on the I-T notices sent to his wife.