Search Results For: strictures


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DATE: April 17, 2017 (Date of pronouncement)
DATE: April 28, 2017 (Date of publication)
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Strictures passed regarding the "standard excuses" of the department for delay in filing appeals, namely, budgetary constraints, lack of infrastructure to make soft copies, change of standing counsel etc

The Court finds that the standard excuse that the Department is putting forth in all such applications for condonation of delay in re-filing the appeal is two-fold. The first is regarding the budgetary constraints of the Department which delayed payment of the differential court fees as a result of the Court Fees Delhi Amendment Act, 2012 which came into force on 1st August 2012. The second is regarding the practice directions issued by the Court pertaining to filing of soft copies of the paperbooks in tax matters

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DATE: March 30, 2017 (Date of pronouncement)
DATE: March 31, 2017 (Date of publication)
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Strike by Advocates: Giving a call to protest when the Bill is still at a draft stage is premature. Wisdom has to prevail on the Advocates in the light of the law laid down in Harish Uppal AIR 2003 SC 739. The law laid down by the Supreme Court is binding on the Advocates as well under Article 141 of the Constitution. The lawyers' community has to appreciate their responsibility in discharging the duties of their profession

If one has to understand the implication or consequences of abstaining from work in general terms, the strike would mean abstaining from work apart form other meanings. It is nothing but demonstration of protest against the suggestions or resolution denying in line with the demand. It can also mean temporary stoppage of activities in protest against any act or a condition imposed. Petitioners’ counsel also rely upon the order dated 5th December 2016 passed in Contempt Petition (C) No.19/2016 in Writ Petition (C) No.132/1988 (Prem Prakash Panigrahi v. Md.Shabbir Ahmed and others) on the file of the Apex Court so also the judgment of the Division Bench of this Court dated 27th October 2014 passed in PIL No.75/2014 (Adv.Manoj Laxman Shirsat v. Bar Council of Maharashtra and Goa). The observations in the case of Capt. Harish Uppal v. Union of India (supra) indicate that the proceedings inside the Court are always expected to be held which commands confidence of the public in the efficacy of the institution of the Courts. In the said decision, the Apex Court has also referred to the duties, obligations, responsibilities and the divine work of the community of the lawyers while discharging their professional duties

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DATE: February 13, 2017 (Date of pronouncement)
DATE: February 20, 2017 (Date of publication)
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The Commissioner and his officials are playing a blame game. To cover up their lapses and deficiencies, they turned around and blamed their Advocates .. We are sorry to say that this is not what was expected from the Commissioner of Service Tax. If the officers are unaware of legal procedures, then, they have to be in touch with their Advocates and periodically. They cannot expect that the Advocate himself comes to their office and apprise them as to what further has to be done after the filing of an Appeal

While filing a cryptic affidavit in support, initially we had observed that the Commissioner and his officials are playing a blame game. To cover up their lapses and deficiencies, they turned around and blamed their Advocates. They are of the opinion that their Advocates ought to inform them and at every stage of the matter, particularly as to which office objections have to be complied with or are to be removed. If no such communication is made by the Advocates, then the Commissioner feels that he and his officers are not at fault. We are sorry to say that this is not what was expected from the Commissioner of Service Tax. If the officers are unaware of legal procedures, then, they have to be in touch with their Advocates and periodically. They cannot expect that the Advocate himself comes to their office and apprise them as to what further has to be done after the filing of an Appeal

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DATE: January 12, 2017 (Date of pronouncement)
DATE: January 28, 2017 (Date of publication)
AY: 2009-10
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S. 254(1)/ Rule 34(5)(c): The Tribunal is mandated to pass orders within 90 days of the hearing. Delay is not justified on the ground that 'administrative clearance' was obtained. The aggrieved party is entitled to seek recall of such an order

The order of the Tribunal while rejecting the rectification application does not dispute the fact that the order dated 3rd February, 2016 passed under Section 254(1) of the Act was passed beyond the period of 90 days from the date of conclusion of its hearing on 22nd September, 2015. However, it records that administrative clearance had been taken to pass such an order beyond the period of 90 days. We are at a loss to understand what is meant by ‘administrative clearance’ and the basis for the same. Besides when, how and from whom the administrative clearance was received, are all questions still at large

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DATE: October 21, 2016 (Date of pronouncement)
DATE: November 8, 2016 (Date of publication)
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Strictures: Department's recalcitrance to release the assessee's seized jewellery, even though it is so small as to constitute "stridhan" and even though no addition was sustained in the assessee's hands, is not "mere inaction" but is one of "deliberate harassment"

This court is of opinion that the respondent’s recalcitrance is not mere inaction; it is one of deliberate harassment. Unarguably, the first round of assessment proceedings culminated in no addition of the jewellery or its value in the hands of the petitioner’s husband. The matter ought to have rested there, because the further proceedings were at the behest of the petitioner’s husband who was aggrieved by the additions made (and not aggrieved by the decision on issues in his favour). The ITAT’s decision to proceed de novo, nevertheless strengthened the respondents’ obduracy and hardened their resolve not to release the jewellery. The de novo order did not result in any addition on that aspect at all; still the respondents cling to another ingenious argument- that till the petitioners’ husband’s tax demands are satisfied, they can detain the jewellery

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DATE: September 14, 2016 (Date of pronouncement)
DATE: October 21, 2016 (Date of publication)
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Attitude of the Revenue in not returning seized assets despite assessee having succeeded in appeal is clearly arbitrary and shows an attitude of undue harassment to the assessee in the garb of public Revenue. Interest of public revenue does not authorize Revenue Authorities to work without any authority and create or cause all kinds of harassment to innocent people on the pretext of statutory authority

Aforesaid attitude on the part of respondents is clearly arbitrary and shows an attitude of undue harassment to petitioner in the garb of public Revenue. Interest of public revenue does not authorize Revenue Authorities to work without any authority and create or cause all kinds of harassment to innocent people on the pretext of statutory authority, Revenue Authorities cannot claim liberty/privilege so as to deprive an individual, his property and that too in a manner, which has been found quite unreasonable and wholly without jurisdiction

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DATE: October 15, 2016 (Date of pronouncement)
DATE: October 19, 2016 (Date of publication)
AY: 2015-16
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S. 143(1D): AO cannot rely on Instruction No.1/2015 dated 13.01.2015 to withhold refunds as the same has been struck down by the Delhi High Court in Tata Teleservices & the same is binding on all AOs across the Country. Action of the AO in not giving reasons for not processing the refund application is “most disturbing” and stating that he will wait till the last date is “preposterous”. Action of the AO suggests that it is not enough that the deity (Act) is pleased but the priest (AO) must also be pleased

The action of the officer on the ground urged seems to be in complete variance with the higher echelons of administration of the tax administration being an assessee friendly regime. In fact, the CBDT has itself issued Instruction No.7/2012, dated 1st August, 2002 wherein they have specifically directed the officers of the Revenue to process all returns in which refunds are payable expeditiously. Similarly, as late as in 2014 in the Citizen’s Charter issued by the Income Tax Department in its vision statement states that the Department aspires to issue refunds along with interest under Section 143(1) of the Act within 6 months from date of electronically filing the returns. In this case, the return was filed on 29th November, 2015, yet there is no reason why the Assessing Officer has not processed the refund and taken a decision to grant or not grant a refund under Section 143(1D) of the Act. This attitude on the part of the Assessing Officer leaves us with a feeling (not based on any evidence) that the Officers of the Revenue seem to believe that it is not enough for the assessee to please the deity (Income Tax Act) but the assessee must also please the priest (Income Tax Officer) before getting what is due to him under the Act. The officers of the State must ensure that their conduct does not give rise to the above feeling even remotely

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DATE: September 14, 2016 (Date of pronouncement)
DATE: October 15, 2016 (Date of publication)
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S. 158BC: Action of the Revenue in issuing s. 158BC notice despite the appraisal report clearly stating that no incriminating material was found is highly deplorable as it amounts to harassment of the taxpayer. The Officers cannot act on their whim and fancy. The Dept should adopt a SOP to provide adequate safeguards before issuing notices under Ch. XVIB. Chief CIT directed to pay costs to the assessee

We note that this action on the part of the revenue to issue the impugned notice ignoring the appraisal report is highly deplorable. We live in a Country governed by laws. The Officers of the Income Tax Department are obliged to proceed in accordance with the statutory provisions and not on their whim and fancy. The Officers hold power in trust and must ensure that no citizen is harassed by sending him notices, when on the basis on its own record, such notices are not sustainable. We trust that the Income Tax Department would adopt a standard operating procedure which would provide for appropriate safeguards before issuing notices under Chapter XIVB of the Act. This alone would ensure that Officers of the Revenue act in terms of the mandate provided in the Act. In fact, at the very outset, after a preliminary hearing, we had asked the learned Counsel for the Revenue whether the Revenue would still want to persist with the impugned notice under Section 158BC of the Act. On instructions, Mr. Suresh Kumar, learned Counsel for the revenue informed us that the revenue seeks to press the impugned notice and seek dismissal of the present Petition. In the above view, this is the fit case where costs should be awarded to the Petitioner

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DATE: August 22, 2016 (Date of pronouncement)
DATE: September 5, 2016 (Date of publication)
AY: 2007-08
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Order of the Tribunal in refusing to follow judgement of the co-ordinate bench in the assessee’s own case (holding that transfer fees and TDR premium received by a cooperative society is not taxable on principles of mutuality) without giving reasons is not justified and is breach of principles of judicial discipline

We are of the view that when an identical issue, which had earlier arisen before the Coordinate Bench of the Tribunal on identical facts and a view has been taken on the issue then judicial discipline would demand that a subsequent bench of the Tribunal hearing the same issue should follow the view taken by its earlier Coordinate Bench. No doubt this discipline is subject to the well settled exceptions of the earlier order being passed per incurim or sub silentio or in the meantime, there has been any change in law, either statutory or by virtue of judicial pronouncement. If the earlier order does not fall within the exception which affects its binding character before a coordinate bench of the Tribunal, then it has to follow it. However, if the Tribunal has a view different then the view taken by its Coordinate Bench on an identical issue, then the order taking such a different view must record its reasons as to why it does not follow the earlier order of the Tribunal on an identical issue, which could only be on one of the well settled exceptions which affect the binding nature of the earlier order. It could also depart from the earlier view of the Tribunal if there is difference in facts from the earlier order of Coordinate Bench but the same must be recorded in the order. The impugned order is blissfully silent about the reason why it chooses to ignore the earlier decision of the Tribunal rendered after consideration of Sind Co. Op. Hsg. Society (supra), and take a view contrary to that taken by its earlier Coordinate Bench

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DATE: August 11, 2016 (Date of pronouncement)
DATE: August 17, 2016 (Date of publication)
AY: 2004-05 to 2007-08
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Conduct of the Counsel in making selective reference to the Tribunal’s order in “very deceitful manner” is “highly deplorable”. Attempt to re-argue matter is “clear case of abuse of process of court” and is condemned “in no uncertain terms as it resulted in colossal waste of valuable time of this Tribunal”. Verdict in Dr. T.K. Dayalu (202 TM 531 (Kar) on taxability of development agreements is “not good law” in view of CIT vs. N. Vemanna Reddy (Kar)

We highly deplore the attempts of the petitioner to knock the doors of the Tribunal again in the guise of seeking rectification of order alleging that additional ground of appeal was not decided. As mentioned supra, the additional grounds have been specifically adjudicated and a specific finding had been rendered vide para.9 of the impugned order. Attempts made by the petitioners is nothing but clear case of abuse of process of court and in breach of principles of Res Judicata. We condemn this conduct of petitioner in no uncertain terms as it resulted in colossal waste of valuable time of this Tribunal