Sony India rapped for tax evasion

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NEW DELHI -- Japanese electronics giant Sony Corp.'s India subsidiary has been raided by government excise officials for tax evasion on audio products.

Sony India has been charged by the Central Excise Department in New Delhi of evading excise duties and not declaring the manufacture of 669 radio cassette recorders worth $36,000. The excise due was a mere $7,100.

All the 669 recorders have been seized from the factory at Dharuhera, Haryana, where the raid was carried out. Sony India is accused of neglecting to enter the day's production into the daily stock register and directly loading the products onto trucks for shipments to the market.

Sony claims the book entry was delayed by a couple of intervening holidays between August 9, when the bulk of the recorders were made, and August 12, by which time 669 of them were ready for shipment.

The Japanese marketer entered India through its wholly owned subsidiary in January 1995. Since then it has launched colour TVs, audio products, camcorders and a video CD in the market where it enjoys tremendous goodwill, especially for its Trinitron technology and music systems.

Sista Saatchi & Saatchi and Anthem Communications, both New Delhi, handle.

Copyright July 1996 Crain Communications Inc.

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