GST Mumbai East Commissionerate of Mumbai Zone on Friday detected a GST evasion worth Rs 40.5 crore and recovered Rs 49.20 crore in cash pertaining to GST evaded, interest, and penalty from the cryptocurrency exchange WazirX.
As per a press release from the Commissionerate, the detection was made while investigating the business activities of the exchange, which is managed by Zanmai Labs and cryptocurrency WRX is owned by Binance Investment, Seychelles.
According to the release, this exchange provides an option to the trader to transact in rupee or WRX. The WRX have to be purchased from the WazirX platform. The taxpayer is charging commission on each transaction in cryptocurrency from both buyer and seller both, it said.
“However, the rate of commission is different for both transactions. The transaction in rupee attracts the commission of 0.2 percent and the transaction in WRX attracts the commission of 0.1 percent,” added the release.
During the investigation, it came to notice that the taxpayer used to collect revenue from the commission as trading fees, deposit fees, and withdrawal fees. The taxpayer was paying GST only on commission earned in rupee but was not paying GST on commission earned in WRX. A GST at the rate of 18 percent is applicable on these transaction fees. GST of Rs. 40.5 crore was not paid, which was paid along with interest and penalty on December 30. Total Rs. 49.2 crore have been recovered on the spot from the WazirX. Further investigation is in progress.
The above case is a part of the special anti-tax evasion drive, which relies on intensive data mining and data analytics, initiated by the CGST Mumbai Zone. The officers of CGST Mumbai zone are investigating business transactions related to emerging economic spaces like e-commerce, online gaming, Non-Fungible Tokens to identify the areas of possible tax evasion.
“The CGST department will cover all the cryptocurrency exchanges falling in the Mumbai zone and will also intensify this drive in the coming days,” stated the release.
Investigation into the case is in progress.
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