CIT vs. Jackson Engineers Ltd (Delhi High Court)

DATE: (Date of pronouncement)
DATE: October 30, 2012 (Date of publication)

Click here to download the judgement (jackson_engineers_non_payment_counsel_fees.pdf)

High Court fumes on non-payment of fee to Dept’s counsel & extracts promise that there would be no laxity in the assistance rendered to the court in future

The Department filed an appeal in the High Court. However, the matter was not properly represented by the department’s counsel and it transpired that the department’s Counsel had not been paid their fees by the department for a long time. The Court directed the CBDT to file a chart giving details of the total bills raised month-wise by each of the 10 standing counsels, the amounts for which these have been settled and the payments released against the bills. It directed that the reason for the difference between the bills raised and as paid should be communicated to the counsels and incorporated in the chart. However, there was continuous non-compliance by the CBDT, the Court directed the Member CBDT and the Chief Commissioner to appear in person and explain the position.

Mr.K.P.Chowdary, Member, CBDT (A&J) and Mr.Amitabh Misra, Chief Commissioner-III appeared before the court and promised that necessary action with regard to revamping the system and giving better assistance to the court had been taken. As regards the non-payment of fee to counsel, it was stated that the arrears towards the admitted fee would be cleared in the next two months and in cases where there was a dispute of parameters, it would be sorted out with the counsels themselves. The CBDT Member requested that a quietus may be given to the issue and assured the court that there would be no laxity in the assistance rendered to the court in future.

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