• Financial details of business being asked

We have received a registered letter from the Director & Statistics Officer, Dehradun, Uttarakhand. We are running a small hotel.

The covering letter is a photocopy of a DM letter with our business name written by pen on it. The letter is in Hindi stating that we should provide Balance sheet and other details of our property to the district office of the Economics & Statistics Officer Vikash Bhawan, Dehradun. The hard copy of the documents need to be sent along with a soft copy to [deleted] 

The second covering letter is in English from the Government of India, Ministry of Statistics & Programe Implementation. Office of The Deputy Director General & Statistics Officer, National Sample Survey Office (Field Operations Division). This is what is mentioned on the letter head which is in black and white. and the Ashok Lions on top in black not color.

The Subject mentions : Notice for collection of statistics on services sector establishments (including Construction, trade, hotel & restaurants, transport, real estate, business services etc) and related activities under the provisions of the Collection of Statistics Act 2008 (No. 7 of 2009) & rules framed there under in 2011.

The letter is asking for the following data within one month of receipt of the letter.

You shall furnish a copy each of the balance sheet, profit & loss account, details of expenditure on employees, Director's report and any other legal documents pertaining to the operations of the enterprise to the officer of the local office in support of the information furnished by you in the enquiry schedule 2.35. 

The address given to send the data is

District Economics & Statistics Officer Vikas Bhawan, Dehradun

The letter then has a lot of forms in Hindi to be filled in.

Please advise if the above mentioned department etc has the power to ask for such documents which is generally like a Income Tax Inquiry and are very private and confidential data.

What should we be doing.
Is it a fake inquiry, as 8 odd months two young scruffy boys in their 20s had come to us asking for such data too and were very rude etc and did not look the kind plus were also in the end asking for free meal and stay etc. They did mention that they would be sending a similar letter in a month or so, but nothing happened and now we receive this. 
Please advise.
Asked 7 years ago in Civil Law

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2 Answers

1) he Act provides penalties for neglect or refusal to furnish information.

2) under the new Act, failure to provide information could entail penalty of up to Rs 1,000 in case of individuals and Rs 5,000 in case of a company,

3) To ensure confidentiality of data under the Collection of Statistics Act, 2008, any disclosure of information collected from any individual or entity without ensuring secrecy of the identity of the respondent is prohibited.

4) The Act provides for collecting statistics on economic, demographic, social, scientific and environmental aspects not only from industrial and commercial concerns but also from individuals and households.

5)To prevent misuse, it has been decided that information collected cannot be used as evidence for prosecution under any other law.

Ajay Sethi
Advocate, Mumbai
95197 Answers
7607 Consultations

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If you suspect a foul play and feel that this may not be a genuine request or an authenticated notice from the department concerned, yo0u may issue a notice to the sender through your lawyer stating that under what provisions of law that the said information is sought and what is the purpose of asking this.

If at all any such detail is required to be sent, the lawyer's notice may indicate that you would be ready to furnish the same before the authorities in the event of such requirement notified to you, that too calling on the office in person should there be an intimation to this effect. The lawyer notice may also hint that you shall be accompanied with your auditor and lawyer for furnishing the details desired.

This notice would invoke a good response which would clear all the doubts,

You may consult a local advocate on this and proceed as per his advise on all such further issues.

T Kalaiselvan
Advocate, Vellore
85398 Answers
2235 Consultations

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