11 Crypto Exchanges Fined $13M by India for Tax Evasion

11 Crypto Exchanges Fined $13M by India for Tax Evasion
  • 11 crypto exchanges have been subject to tax evasion.
  • A total of 81.54 crore rupees ($10.77M) was detected, 95.86 crore rupees ($12.6M) with penalties included.
  • Wazirx, Coindcx, and Coinswitch Kuber are the top three exchanges with the highest amounts evaded.

The government of India unveiled that the country’s tax authority had investigated 11 cryptocurrency exchanges regarding tax evasion. As of today, the government has retrieved a total of 95.86 crore rupees or $12.6 million.

Last Monday in Lok Sabha, the lower house of parliament, the Indian government gave some answers to questions regarding the taxation of cryptocurrency exchanges.

“Whether it is true that some cryptocurrency exchanges were involved in evasion of goods and services tax (GST) and it was also detected that other cryptocurrency exchanges and major investors in digital currencies are under investigation by the government,” Lok Sabha member S. Ramalingam asked the finance minister.

The parliament member also asked about the action taken or proposed by the government against those cryptocurrency exchanges in GST evasion.

Pankaj Chaudhary, the minister of state in the ministry of finance replied:

“Few cases of evasion of goods and services tax (GST) by cryptocurrency exchanges have been detected by Central GST formations.”

11 Crypto Exchanges Named

He disclosed that 11 cryptocurrency exchanges were subject to tax evasion in the amount of 81.54 crore rupees ($10.77M). Together with interest and penalties, the tax authority has retrieved a total of 95.86 crore rupees($12.6).

A list of the 11 investigated exchanges received penalties from the minister of state. Specifically, these included Coindcx, Buyucoin, Coinswitch Kuber, Unocoin, Flitpay, Zeb IT Services (Zebpay), Secure Bitcoin Traders, Giottus Technologies, Awlencan Innovations India, Wazirx, and Discidium Internet Labs. According to the list, Wazirx, Coindcx, and Coinswitch Kuber alone had a total of $9.2M in tax evasion.

Opposition to Crypto Exchange Penalties

Parliament member Ramalingam questioned the finance minister on “whether the government has any data regarding the number of cryptocurrency exchanges… presently involved in cryptocurrency exchange business in the country.”

Finance minister Chaudhary replied:

The government does not collect any data on cryptocurrency exchanges.

In other news, Indian Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman has suggested taxing crypto income at 30%. Moreover, he suggested levying a 1% tax deducted at source (TDS) on every crypto transaction. However, this received opposition from a parliament member. Specifically, the latter encouraged the government to review the 1% TDS, emphasizing that it will “kill the crypto asset class.”

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