Bahl.Mumbai: The Income Tax Department on Wednesday reportedly raided the houses of filmmakers Anurag Kashyap and Vikas Bahl, and leading Bollywood actress Taapsee Pannu in connection with Kashyap's production house Phantom Films, ANI reported.
Simultaneous raids are being conducted in 20 other locations apart from the residences of these celebrities in Mumbai. The Income Tax department has alleged tax evasion as the reason behind the raids.
Searches are also underway at properties of Shibashish Sarkar (CEO, Reliance Entertainment), Afsar Zaidi (CEO, Exceed Entertainment), Vijay Subramaniam (CEO, Kwan Entertainment). Exceed Entertainment and Kwan Entertainment are Mumbai's popular celebrity management agencies.
The Income Tax department probes someone based on whatever information they get. The issue goes to court later," Union Information and Broadcasting Minister Prakash Javadekar said during a BJP briefing.
Several ministers in Maharashtra, meanwhile slammed the searches by the tax department on Mr Kashyap and Mr Pannu, saying the raids are because they are outspoken celebrities. "The way in which raids were conducted in the homes and offices of Anurag Kashyap and Tapasee Pannu, this is definitely the usage of Enforcement Directorate or the Income Tax against those who take a stand against the government or its policies. Anurag Kashyap and Tapasee Pannu have raised their voice against the Modi government's policies. This action is an attempt to suppress their voices," Maharashtra minister Nawab Malik said.