The Chancellor has defended his wife after it emerged she holds the tax-reducing non-domiciled status, as it was reported his allies have accused No 10 of being responsible for the briefings.
Rishi Sunak said his spouse Akshata Murty – who is estimated to be worth hundreds of millions of pounds – had done nothing wrong in choosing a financial arrangement that means she is not legally obliged to pay tax in Britain on foreign income.
He has blamed Labour for the “awful” smears against his family, coming out punching in an interview published in the Sun newspaper.
The chancellor insisted every penny owed in the UK is paid and said: “To smear my wife to get at me is awful.”
He added: “She loves her country like I love mine.”
Critics claim more than £4million in taxes has been swerved.
And Labour leader Sir Keir Starmer said it would be “breathtaking hypocrisy” if she is reducing her bill while the Chancellor raised taxes for millions of Brits.
Sunak told the Sun he would never dream of asking his wife to give up Indian citizenship for the sake of his political career.
The Chancellor said his wife was domiciled in India and had never based herself anywhere else offshore.
The Chancellor added: “I can appreciate people find this situation confusing.
“But what it comes down to is, my wife was born in India, raised in India. Her family home is in India, she obviously has a very close connection. She has investments and a career independent of me.
“She had this well before we met, before she moved to this country.
“It wouldn’t be reasonable or fair to ask her to sever ties with her country because she happens to be married to me. She loves her country. Like I love mine, I would never dream of giving up my British citizenship. And I imagine most people wouldn’t.”