Guptas' lifestyle 'at odds' with tax declarations

23 August 2017 - 07:39 By Timeslive
Ajay Gupta and his younger brother Atul.
Ajay Gupta and his younger brother Atul.

Did the Gupta brothers convince the South African Revenue Service (SARS) that they earned R1-million or less – three years in a row?

Documents contained in a massive cache of leaked emails suggest this could be the case‚ Scorpio and amaBhungane reported on Wednesday.

The family appear to enjoy a lavish personal lifestyle. They live in mansions‚ have chartered private jets and threw a lavish wedding at Sun City.

SARS documents among the leaked emails purport to show that the Gupta brothers declared personal income that was not in line with their lifestyle. SARS declined to comment on their personal tax affairs.

TimesLIVE revealed in June that the Gupta family were such fans of sandy beaches and palm trees that they looked into buying an island in the Maldives and a villa in the Seychelles that boasted the Abu Dhabi royal family as neighbours.

Leaked emails revealed that the proposed purchases‚ which seem to have been at an advanced stage‚ ranged between $5-million (R64-million) and $15-million for the Maldives‚ depending on whether a villa or island was bought‚ and $11-million for the Seychelles villa.

Atul Gupta – in an interview with BBC Radio 4 early in August – denied that the family were involved in bribery‚ influencing government ministers or had unduly benefited from lucrative parastatal contracts.

“We don’t know why our name is being dragged in these things‚” he told the radio station.