The Bharatiya Janata Party's prime ministerial candidate L K Advani demanded on Friday that the government should make efforts to bring back the black money deposited by Indians in foreign banks and also raise the issue at an upcoming G-20 meet.
Advani, who was unveiling a report of a four-member task force of the party formed to look into the issue of Indian black money in foreign banks, said it was more dangerous than the black money circulated inside the country. He said as the National Security Advisor himself had pointed out, the black money from outside the country finds way into the Indian market as "terror money".
He also demanded that the government should raise the issue of black money in the G-20 meet scheduled on April 25. The four-member task force appointed by the BJP leadership to look into the issue comprises chartered accountant S Gurumurthy, Prof Vaidyanathan of the Iindia Institute of Management, Bangalore, security expert Ajit Doval and lawyer and BJP Lok Sabha nominee Mahesh Jethmalani.
Advani said the figures given by his party were not absurd. "The government has not denied the existence of black money. The figures are not absurd as the government says. The dimension of the loot can be denied but the fact of the loot cannot be denied".
Quoting the report, he said money to the tune of Rs 6.88 lakh crore from India and other developing countries was deposited in tax havens abroad in the last five years.
"India should stop being a silent spectator to secret banking and tax havens. This (black money) is a matter in which Western countries have become active in the last few years," Advani said, adding "I set up the task force as the issue is linked with our security".
He said the task force report would be sent to political parties and US President Barack Obama besides to France and Germany, the two countries vigorously pursuing the issue.
Quoting international expert on slush funds Raymond Baker, Advani dwelt on the link between terror and national security. "My party has been highlighting how this issue has been handled by the UPA government," Advani said.
"I felt unhappy when my raising the black money issue was mocked at. I have not picked the figures from Wikipedia but they are based on something substantial. Even the Swiss ambassador has said that a lot of money from India is coming to Swiss banks," the BJP leader said.
He said, if voted to power, the NDA government would initiate vigorous action to bring back black money in secret Swiss accounts and other tax havens through a 100-day programme.
Advani said the task force report would also be sent to G-20 countries. He also asked voters to "punish Congress which has no political will to fight corruption and crime money."