Hasan Ali Khan vs. ITSC (Bombay High Court)

DATE: (Date of pronouncement)
DATE: February 8, 2008 (Date of publication)

(i) The Chairman of the Settlement Commission has the power to constitute a Special Bench and he is not required to give reasons or produce the material in support thereof.

(ii) It is not as if the moment an application is made and there is compliance of the requirements of Section 245-D that the Commission is bound to entertain the application and allow it. The Commission has then to consider whether the application is invalid under Section 245-D(2C). The Settlement Commission can treat the application as invalid meaning thereby non – est if the Applicant has not made a true and full disclosure and further must disclose how the income has been derived. If on the material it arrives at a conclusion even prima facie that there was no true and full disclosure it has then the right to declare the application as invalid.

(iii) On facts, there was no failure of the principles of natural justice as all the recorded statements were provided to the assessee. The argument that the documents were supplied at the time of the hearing and sufficient opportunity was not given is not acceptable as such plea was not taken before the Commission;

(iv) Though the Settlement Commission did not follow the correct procedure in hearing the application for privilege of documents by revenue, by directing the petitioners to leave the premises, that by itself could not vitiate the proceedings.