The Income Tax Department today has conducted survey operations at all major Bitcoin Exchanges across the country on suspicion of alleged tax evasion, official sources said.
The officials said various teams of the sleuths of the department, under the command of the Bengaluru investigation wing, today visited the premises of nine such exchanges in the country including in Delhi, Bengaluru, Hyderabad, Kochi and Gurugram, since early morning.
The survey, under section 133A of the Income Tax Act, is being conducted for “gathering evidence for establishing the identity of investors and traders, transaction undertaken by them, identity of counterparties, related bank accounts used, among others,” they said.
The survey teams, sources said, are armed with various financial data and inputs about the working of these exchanges and this is the first big action against them in the country.
Last month, finance minister Arun Jaitley too had clarified that the government does not recognise any form of virtual currencies including bitcoins. “Recommendations are being worked at. The government’s position is clear, we don’t recognise this (cryptocurrency) as legal currency as of now,” he had said.