It has been made official that Indians have at least $2.5 billion (more than Rs. 11000 crore) in Swiss banks. But this figure is argued to be an understatement of the total wealth held by Indians there.

The ever-growing security and scrutiny over the alleged black money in Swiss banks has led Indian entities to change their path towards other safe havens like Singapore, Mauritius and the Middle East.

It is highly notable that it is the ever official disclosure of money of Indians in Swiss Banks. The Swiss National Bank (SNB) has stated that such deposits amounted to 1.945 bn Swiss francs ($ 2.5 bn) by the end 0f 2010. The sum also includes the $2.1 bn in savings and deposits by Indian entities, financial institutions and corporate houses. But the Indian deposit has always been speculated to be around $1.5 trillion.

All the scrutiny and regulation has led to the flight of money from former favourite Swiss Banks to banks in Dubai and Singapore, the new found favourites. The foreign capital-friendly regulations in places such as Mauritius and Dubai are held to be a good reason to shift the money there. India is reported to have started moves to revise its bilateral treaty with Switzerland to help it get more information about the Swiss bank accounts of Indians.

The Indian Black money in foreign banks has always been a matter of political strife for many years in India. The courts in India have widened their scrutiny in recent months. The SC of India had recently formed a Special Investigation Team to probe the matter while criticizing the government in its lethargic attitude towards the matter.
SEBI and RBI, the two top regulators of India have stepped up their vigil on Indian accountholders routing their funds from Swiss Banks to India through Dubai and other places.


Report by Bikram Singh Rana