New Delhi/Berne: As Switzerland strives hard to re-establish its global financial centre position after clamping down on secrecy walls of its banks, there has been a significant surge in the number of cases where it has initiated process to share information on Indians with Swiss bank accounts and shot off letters to about a dozen such individuals last week itself.
The two Indians whose names have been mentioned in full are Krishna Bhagwan Ramchand (born in May 1949) and Kalpesh Harshad Kinariwala (born in September 1972). However, no further details have been disclosed about them as well.
The Indian nationals with redacted names include Mrs A S B K (born November 24, 1944), Mr A B K I (born July 9, 1944), Mrs P A S (born November 2, 1983), Mrs R A S (born November 22, 1973), Mr A P S (born November 27, 1944), Mrs A D S (born August 14, 1949), Mr M L A (born May 20, 1935), Mr N M A (born February 21, 1968) and Mr M M A (June 27, 1973).
In these notices, the individuals or their authorised representatives have been asked to file their appeals, if any, within 30 days with necessary documentary proof to support their case against providing 'administrative assistance' to India, which broadly means sharing of their banking and other financial details.
Earlier this month on May 7, a similar notice was issued to another Indian national, Ratan Singh Chowdhury, giving an option to appeal within ten days, while another Indian national with redacted name, Mr R P N, was given 30 days on May 14.
In April also, some such notices were issued including to one Mrs J N V, as also to Mr Kuldip Singh Dhingra and Anil Bhardwaj, among others.
Several of these names are said to have figured in the leaked HSBC lists and Panama papers which allegedly contained names of Indians with Swiss bank accounts and are being probed by Indian authorities in alleged black money cases. In case of Krishna Bhagwan Ramchand and Kalpesh Harshad Kinariwala, such notices were issued in April as well and fresh notices have been served to them presumably after their responses to the earlier notices.
Since March, at least 25 notices have been issued by the Swiss authorities to Indian clients of Switzerland-based banks in which they have been given one last chance to appeal against sharing of their details with India.
An analysis of the notices issued by the Federal Tax Administration, Switzerland government’s nodal department for sharing of information on foreign clients of Swiss banks, shows that the Swiss government has stepped up its efforts in sharing such details with a number of countries in the recent months, but the surge in India-related cases is noticeable in the past few weeks.
At least 11 such notices were issued to Indian nationals on May 21 itself, though the gazette notifications of the Swiss government has redacted full names for several of them while making public only their initials besides the nationality and the dates of birth