The investigation unit of the Income Tax Department in Chennai has roped in cyber experts to crack Nokia’s computer systems in the Sriperumbudur manufacturing plant.

This is to investigate the method of software download by the Indian company from its parent in Finland to manufacture mobile phones.

A team of cyber experts from Central Forensic Science Laboratories, Hyderabad, along with officials of Income Tax’s investigation team started the investigation at 11.30 am, said a Department official who is part of the team on condition of anonymity.

The Department had found that in the last six years Nokia India had been downloading software from its parent company in Finland to manufacture mobile devices worth Rs 30,000 crore at the Sriperumbudur plant. Royalty is paid for the software downloaded. This, in turn, attracts a 10 per cent TDS (tax deduction at source) amounting to Rs 3,000 crore, according to the IT Department.

During recording of statements related to the case, various Nokia officials gave different versions on the software download. “We wanted a third party, which is a Government unit, to find out how the download happens. This will only strengthen our stand of the TDS violation and help us in case the company goes to the Court,” the official said.

The Department hopes to get the TDS amount of Rs 3,000 crore from Nokia before March end. The investigation went on till late evening, the official said.

raja.simhan@thehindu.co.in

(This article was published on February 7, 2013)
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