Actor Vijay being questioned for tax evasion, Bigil producers raided
One of Tamil cinema’s highest paid actors, Vijay is being questioned in connection to a tax evasion case. The properties of AGS Cinemas and film financier Anbu Cheliyan are being raided in Madurai. Vijay’s 2019 film, Bigil, was produced by AGS Cinemas, and has reportedly grossed Rs 300 crore worldwide.
As per NewsMinute, Vijay was shooting for his upcoming film, Master, at the Neyveli coal mines along with Vijay Sethupathi when the IT officials reached there. The actor was reportedly issued summons over his income following the success of the sports drama. His questioning is expected to continue on Wednesday evening as he arrives in Chennai.
Searches were also carried out at the actor’s residence in September 2015 ahead of his film Puli’s release. Properties of his co-actors Nayanthara and Samantha were also searched. Vijay had released a statement denying reports of alleged tax evasion at the time.
NDTV reports that the BJP in Tamil Nadu had opposed the release of Vijay’s 2017 film, Mersal, because it featured dialogues critical of the government’s implication of the Goods and Services Tax (GST) and demonetisation.
When the GST was rolled out, more than 1000 Tamil Nadu theatres were closed in protest. Vijay had said in a 2016 interview, “The Centre’s move is a good thing. It is courageous, was required and a welcome effort. There is no doubt it will help the country’s economy to grow.” He asked, “There could be 20 per cent (of the population) who are rich. A small percentage of them may have committed a mistake (black money) but what did the rest do?”
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