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Discrepancies totalling Rs650 crore uncovered in Anurag Kashyap, Taapsee Pannu raids, claim IT officials

More than 20 sites linked to Kashyap's former venture, Phantom Films, were raided in Mumbai, Hyderabad and Pune.

Our Correspondent

The income tax department is reportedly looking into tax and income discrepancies totally Rs 650 crores in connection with the recent raids on Taapsee Pannu, Anurag Kashyap, Madhu Mantena and Vikas Bahl's residences. A day after the raids, the Central Board of Direct Taxes (CBDT) released a statement claiming that the department raided two production and two talent management companies in the course of the operation.

The news agency PTI quoted the CBDT statement confirming that the department had raided Pannu and Kashyap's residences, as well as the filmmaker's former production house, Phantom Films. The statement read, "Evidence of huge suppression of income by the leading film production house compared to the actual box office collections has been unearthed."

It also read, "Company officials have not been able to explain the discrepancy of around Rs300 crore."

The statement, however, did not name or specify the company in question. 

In addition to the Rs300 crore, the officials are also investigating 'manipulation and under-valuation of share transactions' among the directors and shareholders with tax implications amounting to Rs350 crore. 

Phantom Films was founded in 2011 by Kashyap, Bahl, Mantena, and Motwane. The firm was dissolved after Kashyap and Motwane parted ways with Bahl in 2018 over allegations against the latter. In 2020, Kashyap, Bahl, and Motwane sold their shares, amounting to 50% ownership of the production house, to Mantena. The other 50% is owned by Reliance Entertainment. 

The department confirmed that similar issues are being probed in connection with the actress as well. Pannu was the lead in one of the final Phantom Films ventures, Manmarziyaan (2018). The actress has also signed on for Kashyap's upcoming film, Do Baaraa.

The department also added that similar discrepancies were being investigated with regard to Rs20 crore as ''non-genuine expenditure by the film directors and shareholders". 

According to the CBDT statement, a huge amount of digital data and seven bank lockers have been taken into custody.