In a rather rare case of direct intervention, BJP President Amit Shah is said to have influenced CBDT officials to resolve the issue of cooperatives of Karnataka state, popularly called Souharda co-ops. Indian Cooperative has featured a news report titled “IT woes: Harassed Souharda cooperators rush to Delhi” detailing their woes.
Troubled incessantly by the Income Tax dept officials, several cooperators connected to the Souharda cooperative societies had rushed to Delhi to meet BJP top guns and seek relief. Jyotindra Mehta, NAFCUB President had accompanied them in these consultations.
The delegation spoke of their woes to Shah and submitted a memorandum regarding income tax problems related to the cooperative sector.
Detailing the series of events that followed after the delegation met Shah, Gurunath Janthikar, a member of the team said that Shah was prompt and phoned CBDT Chairman Sushil Chandra immediately but somehow the latter did not pick up his call. Aware that the CBDT Chairman will call back soon, Shah asked the delegation to wait for a while. And soon the phone call came, Janthikar narrated, asking the members to meet the Chairman in the North Block.
CBDT Chairman listened the concerns of the delegation patiently and followed it up by phoning Karnataka Income Tax Chief Balakrishna asking him to resolve the issues. Chairman also asked the concerned official to give his replies in writing. He sent off the delegation promising to get back to them within fifteen days.
The incident was also mentioned by Jyotindra Mehta who wrote on his FB wall “Amitbhai immediately understood the matter and sent the team to convince the CBDT chairman and get the issue resolved. Shri Amitbhai Shah was prompt in solving the problem of co-operative workers of Karnataka state,” in his Facebook post Mehta wrote.
It is to be noted that according to sub-section 4 of 80 P that the IT act does not apply on Credit Cooperatives but despite this income tax officials keep harassing them. They are given notices every now and then.
The delegation comprised of Karnataka State Souharda Federal Cooperative (KSSFCL) Chairman B.H.Krishnareddy, director Gurunath Janthikar, H.V.Rajiv, Managing Director Sharangowda G.Patil, NAFCUB President Jyotindra Mehta, Laxmi Narayan Gupta and others.
More than 4,456 Souharda cooperatives are the member of Karnataka State Souharda Federal Cooperative. The total deposits of these cooperatives are 14,000 crore and loans of about Rs 11,000 crore.