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Some one month back, Delhi High Court has lifted the freeze on Nokia India assets thereby allowing transfer of Chennai manufacturing plant to Microsoft as part of global Nokia-MS deal. Delhi High Court has also ordered Nokia to deposit 22.5 billion rupees ($367 million) in an escrow account, as a condition for lifting the freeze.

The IT department has however moved to court again, saying that “the guarantee given by Nokia Finland does not serve any purpose as it does not state specific information under different subheads”.

Senior Counsel NP Sahni, appearing on behalf of the department, said that the requisite information concerning the “situs” for deposit of Rs 3,500 crore and its mode of realisation has not been specified by Nokia in its letter of guarantee. He also highlighted that Nokia had not stated the duration within which it will deposit the said amount.

IT department has pleaded for issuance of necessary directions for placing the amount of Rs 3,500 crore ($562 million) in an escrow account. Seems, department is also worried about how they will be able to extract tax payment in case the tax liability exceeds 3500 crores.

Department officials also said that clarification from the High Court is sought on who will be liable for Nokia India’s tax dues, in case adverse orders exceeding Rs 3,500 crore are passed and upheld by the courts.

The taxman, via clarifications, has sought that the tax liability of Nokia Finland and NIPL should be brought on a par, along with liberty being granted to the department to approach the court in case NIPL’s demand exceeds Rs 3,500 crore.

The next court hearing is fixed for January 17th.


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