A year after the Panama Papers, a new set of data taken from another offshore law firm, Appleby, could expose the hidden wealth of individuals, including Indians, and show how corporations, hedge funds and others may have skirted taxes.
Among the 180 countries represented in the data, India ranks 19th in terms of the number of names, a report on Indian Express website said.
There are 714 Indians in the tally, it reported.
Interestingly, an Indian firm figures as Appleby’s second-largest client globally, with at least 118 different offshore entities, it said.
The disclosure comes two days before the marks the first anniversary of the demonetisation drive on November 8, which the rulling BJP will observe as Anti-Black Money Day.
While the India portion identifies a number of individuals and Indian corporate hotshots, the documents themselves do not as yet point to any evidence of wrongdoing or illegality.
Crucially, this time around, when compared to the earlier Panama Papers leak, a number of Indian companies also figure in the documents. According to Indian Express, these “include firms in the Sun-TV-Aircel-Maxis case; Essar-Loop 2G case; SNC-Lavalin in which Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan was named, then cleared; the Rajasthan ambulance scam which has recently been routed to the CBI and which names a company called Ziquista Healthcare (Sachin Pilot and Karti Chidambaram were early Honorary/Independent Directors of the firm respectively)”.
Appleby’s second-largest client internationally interestingly is an Indian company called the Sun Group, founded by Nand Lal Khemka.