The Enforcement Directorate on Monday questioned Bollywood actor Aishwarya Rai Bachchan for nearly five hours in the Panama Papers leak case.
The actor deposed before the investigators following the summons issued by the federal agency against her to join the probe. The ED recorded the statement of 48-year-old Aishwarya Rai in the case over the allegations of stashing wealth abroad under the Foreign Exchange Management Act, 1999. The actress had earlier submitted records on the foreign payments under investigation.
The ED had issued notices to the Bachchan family asking them to explain their foreign remittances since 2004 under the Liberalised Remittance Scheme (LRS) of the Reserve Bank of India.
Sources in the ED said Aishwarya Rai Bachchan was summoned earlier, too, but she could not appear and sought next dates at least two times.
The Panama Papers pertain to leaked documents that point towards fraud and tax evasion by many individuals and corporate entities across the world. Aishwarya Rai Bachchan's name featured in the list of 500 Indians who were named in the massive leak of 11.5 million tax documents exposing their secret offshore dealings.
"The Panama Papers" case is a sprawling investigation spanning millions of documents stolen and leaked to the media in 2016, which involves allegations that the world's rich and powerful set up offshore accounts or shell companies to avoid taxes.
Over 300 Indians were said to be part of the Panama Papers. Many Indian celebrities, including Amitabh Bachchan and Aishwarya Rai, were named in this paper leak.
All these people were accused of tax fraud. After the name surfaced in this case, Amitabh Bachchan had said he had sent money abroad only under Indian rules. He also denied having any affiliation with the companies that appeared in the Panama Papers.