India’s tax authority has added a new reporting requirement to tax returns requiring all non-resident Indian nationals (NRIs) to disclose details of their bank accounts outside of India.
The action is not regarded as a direct attack on NRIs but rather an upgrade in monitoring of NRIs and comes as India increases its clampdown on tax evaders. The country has agreed a number of tax information exchange agreements with other countries, including Switzerland.
Indian nationals who live abroad for more than 182 days can avoid local tax by classing themselves as non-residents for tax purposes. They were allowed to claim funds held in foreign bank accounts as lawful income earned abroad.
Now, NRIs will have to disclose the account numbers of their overseas bank accounts, name of the banks, countries where the bank offices are located as well as the Swift codes and International Bank Account Numbers (IBAN) with the Indian tax authorities, according to Mumbai reports.