When a national weekly such as ‘India Today’ with so huge a circulation in many local languages beside English publishes someone on its cover page, it must be a serious story getting noticed by almost all in the administrative setup of Indian Government who matter. February 7 issue of ‘India Today’ has a photograph of, Hassan Ali Khan smartly smoking a cigarette and a mind blowing revelation: ‘This man owes Rs 50,000 cr. in taxes. He has $8 billion in a Swiss bank. Why is Government afraid to act?’
And when I was going through Times of India of January31, I found the action of the government through another headline though in an inside page: ‘Hasan Ali’s $6 billion in Swiss a/cs missing’. And the information is credited to the finance Minister.
Interestingly, one another cover page story in ‘India Today’ week ago dealt with the same subject of black money as $500 billion loot: “At least $500 billion, or Rs 22.5 lakh crore, has been spirited out of India illegally to foreign bank accounts over the six decades since Independence. This is the key finding of a comprehensive study on the Drivers and Dynamics of Illicit Financial Flows from India: 1948-2008 conducted by the US-based Global Financial Integrity (GFI).”
How can a citizen know what is truth or what is the intention of the government? Should we overlook media reports?
I get reminded of another story about Quattrocchi. In December 2005: ‘Mr B. Datta, the additional solicitor general of India, acting on behalf of the Indian Government and the CBI, requested the British Government that two British bank accounts of Ottavio Quattrocchi be de-frozen on the grounds of insufficient evidence to link these accounts to the Bofors payoff.’
Interestingly, the principal opposition party has circulated a report on black money after a press conference. How serious are they? Have they taken effective steps in the states they rule?
Should the people keep on watching these news reports on TV channels and reading in newspapers and magazines or react in some effective manner? And how should one react?
Sometimes now I start worrying now. Can one day the people of the country will be forced to behave as Egyptians are doing today even though the persons like me may not wish that to happen?