Statutory framework

In India, before the enactment of Prevention of Money Laundering Act, 2002 (PMLA) the major statutes that incorporated measures to address the problem of money laundering were:

  • The Income Tax Act, 1961
  • The Conservation of Foreign Exchange and Prevention of Smuggling Activities Act, 1974 (COFEPOSA)
  • The Smugglers and Foreign Exchange Manipulators Act, 1976 (SAFEMA)
  • The Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substances Act, 1985 (NDPSA)
  • The Benami Transactions (Prohibition) Act, 1988
  • The Prevention of Illicit Traffic in Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substances Act, 1988
  • The Foreign Exchange Management Act, 2000, (FEMA)


  • Prevention of Money Laundering Act, 2002 (PMLA)
    • Prevention of Money Laundering Act, 2002 was enacted to prevent money-laundering and to provide for confiscation of property derived from money-laundering.
    • It prescribes obligation of banking companies, financial institutions and intermediaries for verification and maintenance of records of the identity of all its clients and also of all transactions and for furnishing information of such transactions in prescribed form to the Financial Intelligence Unit-India (FIU-IND).
    • It empowers the Director of FIU-IND to impose fine on banking company, financial institution or intermediary if they or any of its officers fails to comply with the provisions of the Act.


  • The Black money (undisclosed foreign income and assets) and Imposition of Tax Act, 2015:
    • To deal with the menace of the black money existing in the form of undisclosed foreign income and assets by setting out the procedure for dealing with such income and assets.


  • Benami Transactions (Prohibition) Amendment Bill, 2015:
    • It aims to expand the definition of Benami Transactions and specifies the penalty to be imposed on a person entering into a Benami transaction.