Nearly half of the 1.8 million accounts with demonetised cash are under the I-T scanner for suspicious income and these have been put in the 'doubtful' category, but action against the account holders will be taken only after the new tax amnesty scheme ends on 31 March.
Under 'Operation Clean Money', the I-T department had sent SMS and e-mails to 1.8 million account holders, who according to its data analysis had made suspicious deposits of over Rs5 lakh during the 50-day window provided to save remaining old 500 and 1,000 rupee notes following the demonetisation decision announced on 8 November. They were asked to clarify on the deposits and their source by 15 February.
Sources in the government said those who did not reply must have "good legal explanation" for their cash deposits and may have chosen to show them in tax returns.
But a mere showing the same in income tax returns is not sufficient as any abnormal rise in income for 2016-17 over previous years will be considered as unaccounted wealth or blackmoney and treated as per law.
"However, since the SMS and e-mail correspondence do not have any legal backing, the department will have to send formal notices and then wait till 31 March for the end of (tax amnesty scheme) PMGKY and then take action against doubtful cases," PTI quoted a source as saying.