Update: 16th March 2020
The Hon’ble President of the ITAT has issued an Office Order dated 16th March 2020 in which directions have been issued, at all India level, with regard to the functioning of the Benches and the grant of adjournments in the wake of spread of Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19).
INCOME TAX APPELLATE TRIBUNAL
Prathishtha Bhavan, 3rd & 4th Floor,
101 Maharshi Karve Marg, Mumbai – 400 020
Date : 16th March, 2020
In my advisory dated 13.3.2020, addressed to all Vice-Presidents, I had suggested appropriate measures be taken to ensure safety and welfare of all the stakeholders in the wake of spread of Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19). The measures so taken by the Vice-Presidents, in the light of feedback from all the stakeholders and the developments in the prevailing situations, have been reviewed.
2. Considering the developing situation and in the light of the Notification of Hon’ble Supreme Court dated 13th March, 2020, I deem it fit and proper to take certain precautionary measures, at all India level, to check the spread of Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19) epidemic. It is in this backdrop that the following further steps are directed to be taken, at all India level, with immediate effect:-
(i) that the functioning of the Benches for a period from 17.3.2020 to 27.3.2020 shall be restricted to only urgent matters;
(ii) that the Authorized Representatives or parties in person may mention their matters showing their urgency before the concerned Bench and upon the satisfaction of urgency, the Bench shall hear such matters;
(iii) all other routine matters would stand adjourned and the Advocates/Chartered Accountants/Practitioners or assessees need not be present in person for seeking an adjournment on the respective dates of hearing;
(iv) the adjourned dates of hearing shall be notified to the office of respective local ITAT Bar Association, and the office of the respective CIT(Admn) in DR’s office. The ITAT Bar Association shall ensure wide circulation of the dates of
the adjournments; and,
(v) the adjourned dates of hearing shall also be notified on the website of the ITAT after discharge of the Board of the respective Benches.
4. Considering the importance of the measures intended for the safety and welfare of health of all the stakeholders, all concerned are requested to cooperate, in the interest of all.
[Justice P P Bhatt]
The Hon’ble President of the ITAT as well as the Hon’ble Vice-President of the Mumbai Benches have issued important directions with regard to the conduct of hearings and the grant of adjournments in the wake of the disruption caused by the CoronaVirus.
INCOME TAX APPELLATE TRIBUNAL
MUMBAI BENCHES, MUMBAI
3rd and 4th floors, Pratishtha Bhawan
101, Maharishi Karve Marg, Mumbai 400 020
In the light of communication dated 13th March 2020 issued by Hon’ble President, Income Tax Appellate Tribunal, for taking appropriate measures to ensure safety and welfare of all the stakeholders in respect of spread of novel coronavirus (Covid 19), certain steps are being taken which are set out as follows:
1. In order to ensure that the court rooms are not overcrowded and to encourage email communications for the purposes of seeking adjournments, the following steps are being taken with immediate effect :
(i) No person, except the lawyers, chartered accountants, and authorised/ departmental representatives, who are going to act in the matter, along-with not more than one representative of the litigant, shall ordinarily be permitted in the court room;
(ii) When more than one bench, with the same coram, are functioning in a court room, these benches will function, in alphabetical order and after a break of 15 minutes in between, one after the other , and no person, whether departmental representative or the representatives of the assessee, connected with the bench, not functioning at that point of time, will ordinarily be allowed inside the court room. Where more than one benches are functioning in the same court room, the first bench will start at 10.30 sharp, as usual, and the second bench will not start earlier than 11.30 am.
(iii) The adjournment requests, only during the period during which these instructions will remain in force, will also be entertained on email ID firstname.lastname@example.org. Any emails, seeking adjournments, received upto 9.30 am will be placed before the related bench on the same date, and every effort will be made that the dates to which the hearing is adjourned is communicated, through notice on the official website or through the email, by 6.30 pm next day.
2. Any person, showing symptoms such as fever, running nose, cough etc, will not be permitted inside the premises of the Income Tax Appellate Tribunal. In case there is any urgent unavoidable work that they have in the Income Tax Appellate Tribunal, they may use email for contacting the ITAT functionaries. On the same lines as the instructions issued by Hon’ble Bombay High Court, vide circular dated 13th March 2020, all the litigants, public and representatives of the parties are advised to avoid visiting the Tribunal Complex, unless necessary.
3. All the stakeholders are humbly requested not to crowd the passages, court rooms or any other public place in the Income Tax Appellate Tribunal, and to take all such preventive measures, as are recommended by the public authorities from time to time- such as Ministry of Health and Family Welfare (Government of India) and World Health Organization etc, to avoid the spread of coronavirus. A copy of the advisory issued by the Director General of Health Services, Ministry of Health and Family Welfare in the Government of India, is appended below.
4. These instructions shall remain in force till 31st March 2020, or such date as may be subsequently advised, and these instructions may be reviewed, and supplemented, from time to time. In case of any difficulty or, for any feedback, you may write to the Vice President’s Secretariat at email@example.com.
5. Copies of Hon’ble President’s directions, Hon’ble Supreme Court of India’s notification and Hon’ble Bombay High Court’s circular, are appended herewith. The Income Tax Appellate Tribunal seeks cooperation of all the stakeholders in taking all the necessary preventive measures to control the Coronavirus epidemic.
March 13, 2020