India Court Says ByteDance Should Deposit $11 Million in Tax Evasion Case

An Indian court on Tuesday said that China’s ByteDance must deposit around $11 million that federal authorities believe the company owes in an alleged case of tax evasion, a setback for the firm which wanted to unblock its bank accounts to pay salaries, Reuters reported. An Indian tax intelligence agency in mid-March ordered HSBC and Citibank in Mumbai to freeze accounts of ByteDance India as it probed some of the firm’s financial dealings. ByteDance challenged the move in court saying the freeze amounted to harassment and was done illegally. ByteDance has said in court it does not owe the tax government is demanding and does not agree with the tax authority’s decision to freeze its accounts. After a government counsel said ByteDance owed the authorities about 790 million rupees ($11 million), the High Court in Mumbai said the company will need to keep that amount blocked in a state-run bank. That amount will be frozen, the two-judge bench said. However, the four blocked bank accounts of ByteDance had just $10 million in funds, according to the company’s court filing seen by Reuters. Read more.