CIT vs. Indian Hotels Co Ltd (Supreme Court)

DATE: (Date of pronouncement)
DATE: June 22, 2011 (Date of publication)

Click here to download the judgement (indian_hotels_condonation_delay.pdf)

Long Delay due to procedural reasons in filing Dept appeals cannot be condoned

The department filed a SLP challenging the order of the Bombay High Court declining to condone delay of 656 days in filing the appeal. The delay was explained as having been caused by “several facts such as non traceability of case records, procedural formalities involved in the Department and the papers are to be processed through different officers in rank for their comments, approval etc. and then the preparation of the draft of appeal memo, paper book and the administrative difficulties such as shortage of staff“. HELD dismissing the SLP:

In our opinion, the said explanation does not make out a sufficient cause for condonation of delay in filing the appeal before the High Court. In that view of the matter, we do not find any ground to interfere with the impugned judgment. The Special Leave Petition is dismissed on the ground of delay as well as on merits.

Note: Contrast with CIT vs. West Bengal Infrastructure Development Finance Corp (Supreme Court) where it was held that high-revenue department appeals should not be dismissed for delay. See also Dept’s guidelines for “zero delay regime”

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