CIT vs. Devdas Naik (Bombay High Court)

DATE: (Date of pronouncement)
DATE: July 9, 2014 (Date of publication)

Click here to download the judgement (devdas_54_two_flats.pdf)

S. 54/54F: Two flats, even though acquired under different agreements & from different sellers, are one residential unit if there is a common kitchen

The department’s argument that the law laid down by the Tribunal in ITO v/s Sushila M. Jhaveri 107 ITD 327 (Mum)(SB) and confirmed by this Court in CIT v/s Raman Kumar Suri (Income Tax Appeal No.6962 of 2010, decided on 27.11. 2012) on the availability of exemption u/s 54 is applicable only when the house purchased is a single unit and not where two flats, one acquired in the assessee’s name and another jointly in the names of the assessee and his wife but under two distinct agreements and from different sellers have been taken into consideration is not acceptable. Though these flats were acquired under two distinct agreements and from different sellers, the map of the general layout plan as well as internal layout plan in regard to flat Nos.103 and 104 indicate that there is only one common kitchen for both the flats. The flats were constructed in such a way that adjacent units or flats can be combined into one. The admitted fact is that the flats were converted into one unit and for the purpose of residence of the assessee. Thus, though the acquisition of the flats may have been done independently but eventually they are a single unit and house for the purpose of residence.

See also Gita Duggal 357 ITR 153 (Del) where all the case laws are discussed

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