1. Document – contents of memory-card/pen-drive would be a “substance” – Hence, contents of memory-card would be a “document” : Evidence Act, Ss. 3, 65-B ; Information Technology Act of 2000, S. 2(1)(t)

Video footage/clipping contained in memory card/pen drive being an electronic record as envisaged by Section 2(1)(t) of the 2000 Act, is a “document” and cannot be regarded as a material object. An electronic record is not confined to “data” alone, but it also means the record or data generated, received or sent in electronic form. The expression “data” includes a representation of information, knowledge and facts, which is either intended to be processed, is being processed or has been processed in a computer system or computer network or stored internally in the memory of the computer. On a bare reading of the definition of “evidence”, it clearly takes within its fold documentary evidence to mean and include all documents including electronic records produced for the inspection of the Court. This provision is reiteration of the legal position that any information contained in an electronic record which is printed on a paper, stored, recorded or copied in optical or magnetic media produced by a computer shall be deemed to be a “document” and shall be admissible in evidence subject to satisfying other requirements of the said provision. Considering the 42nd and 156th Law Commission Reports, it can be concluded that the contents of the memory card would be a “matter” and the memory card itself would be a “substance” and hence, the contents of the memory card would be a “document”.

P. Gopalkrishnan @ Dileep v. State of Kerala and Anr, : AIR 2020 Supreme Court 1

  1. Public Prosecutor – Role discussed: Cr.P.C. (2 of 1974), Ss. 301, 302, 24(8), Proviso, 2(wa) (as inserted by (Amendment) Act 5 of 2009)

In criminal justice system, the Public Prosecutor occupies a position of great importance. Given that crimes are treated as a wrong against the society as a whole, his role in the administration of justice is crucial, as he is not just a representative of the aggrieved person, but that of the State at large. Though he is appointed by the Government, he is not a servant of the Government or the investigating agency. He is an officer of the Court and his primary duty is to assist the Court in arriving at the truth by putting forth all the relevant material on behalf of the prosecution. While discharging these duties, he must act in a manner that is fair to the Court, to the investigating agencies, as well to the accused. This means that in instances where he finds material indicating that the accused legitimately deserves a benefit during the trial, he must not conceal it. The space carved out for the Public Prosecutor is clearly that of an independent officer who secures the cause of justice and fair play in a criminal trial. From a reading of these provisions, it is clear that a Public Prosecutor is entrusted with the responsibility of conducting the prosecution of a case. That this is a crucial role is evident from conditions such as in Section 24(7), which stipulates a minimum legal experience of seven years for a person to be eligible to be a Public Prosecutor. It is further clear from a joint reading of Section 301 and the proviso to Section 24(8) that the two provisions are mutually complementary. There is no bar on the victim engaging a private counsel to assist the prosecution, subject to the permission of the Court.

Rekha Murarka v. The State of West Bengal and Anr. : AIR 2020 Supreme Court 100

  1. Corporate person – NHAI is statutory body and performs government functions – Proceeding against NHAI is not permissible under Insolvency Code: Insolvency and Bankruptcy code of 2016, S.3(7) – Companies Act of 2013, S.2(20), (45)

NHAI is a statutory body which functions as an extended limb of the Central Government, and performs governmental functions which obviously cannot be taken over by a resolution professional under the Insolvency Code, or by any other corporate body. Nor can such Authority ultimately be wound-up under the Insolvency Code. For all these reasons, it is not possible to accede to the argument to either read in, or read down, the definition of ‘corporate person’ in Section 3(7) of the Insolvency Code.

In this view of the matter, the moment challenges are made to the arbitral awards, the amount said to be due by an operational debtor would become disputed, and therefore be outside the clutches of the Insolvency Code.

Hindustan Construction Company Ltd & Anr v. UOI & Ors. : AIR 2020 Supreme Court 122

  1. Oral Gift in favour of Deity – Registration – Document in nature of dedication of immovable property to God do not require registration as it constitutes religious Trust and it is exempted from registration : Transfer of property Act of 1882, S.123 – Registration Act of 1908, S. 17

It is no doubt true that the gift deed was an unregistered instrument and no title could pass on the basis of the same u/s. 123 of the Transfer of Property Act. However, when the document is in the nature of a dedication of immovable property to God, the same does not require registration as it constitutes a religious trust and is exempt from registration. Section 123 of the Transfer of Property Act does not apply to such a case for “God” is not a “living person” and so the transaction is not a “transfer” as defined by Sec.5 of the Transfer of Property Act. Thus, a gift to an idol may be oral and it may be effected also by an unregistered instrument.

Sri Dadhibaban Mahaprabhu Bije v. Paramananda Sahu : AIR 2020 Orissa 1

  1. Health Insurance Contract – Insurance companies, being ‘Instrumentalities of state’ have freedom to structure their contracts – However, arbitrary or unreasonable clause is not enforceable: Insurance Act of 1938, preamble, S. 2(11) – Constitution of India, Arts. 12, 21, 14

Every citizen ought to be entitled to obtain health insurance and avail of claims arising therefrom. Though, insurance policies are contractual in nature, and parties to them are bound by it, the clauses of such a contract have to stand the test of Constitutionality. Insurance companies, especially those which are „instrumentalities of state under Art. 12, have the freedom to structure their contracts, however, clauses that are unreasonable, arbitrary or contrary to public policy are not immune. If a clause in an insurance contract is unconstitutional, it is not enforceable. Primacy is given to a contract, but not above Fundamental Rights.

The fine print of an insurance contract is not easily understandable by a layman, who operates primarily on the basis of trust and faith. Standard form contracts, especially insurance policies, do not provide a choice to the consumer whether to sign up or not. Under such circumstances, the principle of uberima fides applies, on the insurance companies and the insured.

M/s. United India Insurance Company Limited v. Jai Parkash Tayal : Air 2020 (Noc.) 88

  1. Substantial question of law – Second Appeal Interpretation of any terms and conditions of a document constitutes a substantial question of law. Dismissal order of High Court set aside. Matter remanded

Rajendra Lalitkumar Agrawal v. Ratna Ashok Muranjan And Another [2019(6) MH.L.J.1]

  1. Mutation of a land – Maharashtra Land Revenue code (41 of 1966), ss. 148 and 157

Mutation entry does not create or extinguish title over such land nor it has any presumptive value on title. It only enables person in whose favour mutation in records is made to pay land revenue in respect of land.

Bhimabai Mahadeo Kambekar (D) Thr. Lr v. Arthur Import And Export Company And Others: [2019(6) Mh.L.J.4]

  1. Testamentary succession – Mitakshara Coparcenary property – Hindu Succession Act of 1956, s. 30 Explanation :

A male Hindu can dispose of his interest in property by way of a will – No further independent share could be claimed by other coparceners in ancestral properties as a member of a family . Hence, order of High Court holding that no further independent share could be claimed by appellant in ancestral properties as a member of family, is justified and not interfered with.

Radhamma and Others v. H. N. Muddukarishna And Others [2019(6) Mh.L.J.5]

  1. Power of attorney – Revocation – Effect of revocation on documents executed prior to revocation – Powers of Attorney Act of 1882, SS. 2 and 1-A

Respondent No. 5 acting on basis of General power of Attorney executed by appellants on 25-10-2001 sold property in question to respondents on 13-06-2011 by executing sale deeds . Said general power of attorney was revoked by the appellants by a public notice dated 5-6-2012 but sale deeds were executed by respondent No. 5 much prior to said revocation . Thus, trail court rightly found that appellants had failed to make out a prima facie case to grant injunction in their favour.

Ratnew Vishnu Kamat @ Rukmabai Vishnu Kamat And Another v. Roopali Sunil Lotlikar And Others [2019(6) Mh.L.J.292]

  1. Probate proceedings – Succession Act of 1925, S. 276 and Civil procedure code, S. 24(1)(a) and 1-A Misc. Petitions preferred by executors against each other. Suit filed before civil court seeking disqualification of defendants therein in terms of the Will. Application for transfer of suit to High Court

Nature and character of the proceedings in the suit and Miscellaneous Petitions are different, which are to be decided under different jurisdiction and would culminate in distinct orders.

Probate jurisdiction. Even if the parties are permitted to lead the evidence, such proceedings before the Probate Court are in the “form of the suit” and not the “suit” itself.

Removal of a person as an Executor and debarring a beneficiary from taking any benefit out of estate of testator. Removal of a person as an Executor for not administering the estate may not have civil consequences but if beneficiary is precluded and debarred from taking any benefit out of the estate of the testator would entail in civil consequences.

Devan S. Ghatalia v. Mr. Nanak S. Ghatalia: [2019(6) Mh.L.J.310]

  1. Precedent

When a binding judgement is given by Bench of High Court, any attempt to get over and brush it aside, must be deprecated . It amounts to overreaching Court and refusing to abide by its binding judgement by a backdoor or oblique method.

Reliance Industries Ltd. v. State of Maharashtra And Others [2019(6) Mh.L.J.665]

  1. Committee of administrators – Duration of committee – Goa Co-operative Societies Act of 2001, S. 67-A(1)(e)

Committee cannot be appointed for an indefinite period. Elections of Board of Directors of Co-operative Society must be held within time prescribed. Impugned orders of registrar extending tenure of Committee
are totally illegal and hence quashed and set aside.

Shree Gopalkrishn Multipurpose Co-Operative Society Ltd., Goa And Another v. State of Goa And Others [2019(6) Mh.L.J.927]

  1. Readiness and willingness of plaintiff to performance his part of contract – Specific Relief Act of 1963, S.16(c) and Evidence Act, S.59

Plaintiff had paid substantial part of consideration . Not necessary to show that he had balance amount when matter proceeding before trial court . Averment about readiness and willingness and proof thereof by oral evidence is sufficient.

Kerba S/o Ambadas Dhengle v. Digambar S/o Ishwara Chavan (Deceased) Through His L.Rs. Chandrakant S/o Digambar Chavan And Others: [2019(6) Mh.L.J.939]

  1. 4 : Charge of income-tax – Mesne profit– Arbitral award – damages from tenant for unauthorized occupation of let out property, amount so received being in nature of ‘mesne profit‘ was a capital receipt, not liable to tax [S. 22]

Assessee owned a property which was given on sub-lease to PSIDC. PSIDC did not vacate premises after determination of sublease. Matter was thus referred to arbitrator who passed an award in terms of which assessee received damages for unauthorised occupation of property by PSIDC. AO held that amount so received was nothing but unrealized rent and should be taxed as ‘income from house property. Tribunal held that on facts, damages received by assessee were in nature of mesne profits which were not chargeable to tax being in nature of a capital receipt. (AY. 2010-11)

Talwar Bro. (P.) Ltd. v. ITO (2019) 178 ITD 818 (Kol) (Trib.)

  1. 4 : Charge of income-tax – Development and operation of multipurpose port terminal – Share capital in form of foreign inward remittance – Unutilised funds – FDR interest – Capital receipt – Interest income is a capital receipt and is not taxable at all both under the normal provisions of the Act as well as under S. 115JB of the Act [S.56, 115JB]

The assessee-company was incorporated to develop, operate multipurpose port terminal. For the purpose of the port terminal project, the assessee raised share capital as foreign inward remittance from its holding company (P.) Ltd. Cyprus. The IPO was raised for the specific purpose of developing multipurpose port terminal facility and logistics facility at Karanja Creek. However, the port terminal could not be developed as envisaged and planned as it was delayed for various reasons beyond the control of the assessee and therefore the unutilized funds as received from the IPO were put in fixed deposits and ICDs with banks and non-Banking finance companies till the resumption of development work of the port terminal and other facilities at Karanga Creek. The assessee, treated the said interest as capital in nature and did not file any return of income for the instant year. AO assessed the income as income from other sources. CIT (A) confirmed the order of the AO. Tribunal held that the interest income received by the assessee from the FDRs/ICDs made out of funds are inextricably linked to the development of port terminal and other infrastructure which was yet to be completed and commissioned. These funds could not be used for the development work of the port due to late issuance of permissions / clearances by the Government authorities and also due to some local issues. Therefore, the interest income is a capital receipt and is not taxable at all both under the normal provisions of the Act as well as under S. 115JB of the Act. (AY. 2013-14 to 2015-16)

Karanja Terminal & Logistics (P.) Ltd. v. DCIT (2019) 178 ITD 659 / 71 ITR 390 (Mum) (Trib.)

  1. 4 : Charge of income-tax – Capital or revenue – Compensation for termination of lease – Loss of source of income – Capital receipt not to chargeable to tax [S. 45]

Assessee-company owned a godown. This property was already given on long term lease of 99 years. The lessee sold the property. The assessee entered into MOU with lessee in terms of which assessee received compensation of ₹ 4.65 crore towards termination of long-term lease. The AO treated the compensation as sale consideration. CIT (A) confirmed the order of the AO. On appeal the Tribunal held that compensation received was towards loss of source of income; same could not be treated as revenue receipt, and it was capital receipt not liable to tax. Referred Karam Chand Thapar and Bros. (P.) Ltd. v. CIT (1971) 80 ITR 167 (SC), Kettlewell Bullen & Co. Ltd. v. CIT (1964) 53 ITR 261, (SC) (AY. 2012-13)

Butterfly Marketing P. Ltd. v. DCIT (2019) 179 ITD 431 (Chennai) (Trib.)

  1. 9(1)(i) : Income deemed to accrue or arise in India – Permanent establishment – Liaison office of assessee did not constitute PE – Income is not chargeable to tax in India [Art. 5]

Assessee is a company incorporated in Japan and has opened a Liaison office in India seeking RBI approval. Assessee declared nil income in its return of income. AO held that assessee’s LO constituted a PE under Article 5 of India-Japan DTAA as it had a full fledged office with employees and staff. AO also referred to an agreement between assessee’s LO and LG Chemicals Ltd. Korea for granting exclusive and non-transferrable right to distribute chemicals products on commission basis. Tribunal noted that the agreement was valid up to December 1996 and it did not pertain to the year under consideration. Further, the co-ordinate bench of the tribunal in its own case for earlier years held that LO did not constitute a PE of the assessee in India and the LO was performing activities in accordance with permission granted by RBI. Hence, relying on the earlier year order it was held that LO did not constitute PE of the assessee under Article 5 of India-Japan DTAA. (AY. 2002-03)

Nagase and Company Ltd v. ADIT (2019) 109 taxmann.com 288 / 180 DTR 1 (Mum.)(Trib.)

  1. 10(4) : Non-resident – Stayed in India for 283 days for taking up employment – Not entitled to exemption [S.6, 10(14(iii), Foreign Exchange Management Act, 1999, S. 2 (v)]

The assessee had an NRE account in an Indian bank. The assessee claimed exemption under
S 10(4)(ii) on the interest income earned from NRE FD account amounting to ₹ 1.10 crores. The AO rejected the claimand taxed the interest amount on the grounds that though the assessee was a non-resident earlier he became a person resident in India during the current year as per section 2(v) of the FEMA Act, 1999. CIT (A), upheld the order of the AO. On appeal the Tribunal held that since, the assessee has come and stayed in India in the financial year 2014-15, the CIT(A) held that the assessee was a Resident and Ordinarily Resident in India for both income tax purpose and also under FEMA and therefore, he is not eligible for exemption under S. 10(4)(ii) as he does not fulfil the condition required under proviso to the said section, that is, he was a resident outside India in the relevant previous year 2014-15 under FEMA. Since the assessee has come and stayed in India during the financial year 2014-15 for 283 days, his residential status under FEMA is a ‘person resident in India’ only. Therefore, the assessee is not entitled for the deduction under S. 10(4)(ii) of the Act. (AY. 2015-16)

Baba Shankar Rajesh. v. ACIT (2020) 180 ITD 160 (Chennai) (Trib.)

  1. 10(26) : Exemption to member of a Scheduled Tribe – Allowability – Individual vis-a-vispartnership firm – Since partnership firm is not a member of a scheduled tribe – Such firm not entitled to exemption under S. 10(26) – but its partners are eligible for the same [General Clauses Act, 1897, S.13]

Dismissing Assessee’s appeal the Tribunal held that:

1) The specified member of a scheduled tribe only is covered under Art. 366 of the Constitution of India for enjoying the benefit of exemption of income. Hence, the benefit of exemption is available only to a member of Schedule tribe (i.e. individual not partnership firm of such individuals). In such a situation, benefit of doubt in relation to an exemption provision in tax laws goes in favour of the Revenue and not to the taxpayer.

2) Further, the Income-tax Act being a special legislation and complete code in itself, provisions of S. 13 of the General Clauses Act, 1897 (containing masculine and singular expression in central regulations to be inter-changeable as famine gender, plural expression, etc), are of no avail. (Civil Appeal No. 3327 of 2007, dt. 30th July, 2018) relied on. (AY. 2013-14 to 2015-16)

Hotel Centre Point v. ITO (2019) 182 DTR 297 / 201 TTJ 913 (Gau)(Trib)

  1. 10A : Free Trade Zone – Loss in unit situated outside the Software Technology Park (STPI) not adjusted against units within the STPI – Income enhanced – Deduction claimed u/s. 10A to be enhanced – Expenses excluded from export turnover – Consequential exclusion from total turnover

Assessee is engaged in the business of providing solutions to the Railways. It had units both within and outside the Software Technology Park (STPI). In its return of income, it claimed deduction u/s. 10A for income earned from STPI unit. The lower authorities set- off the loss of non-STPI unit against profits of the STPI unit before giving the deduction u/s. 10A. Further, it made various disallowance/addition to returned income filed by the assessee. The authorities restricted deduction u/s. 10A as claimed in the return of income and not assessed income. The lower authorities excluded certain expenses from the export turnover and not from the total turnover while computing deduction u/s. 10A.

The Tribunal held the loss of the non-STPI unit shall not be adjusted against the profits of the STPI unit before computing deduction u/s. 10A. The disallowance/addition made during the assessment proceedings increases the profits of the assessee, thereby the deduction u/s. 10A should also be enhanced. Export turnover is part of total turnover. While computing deduction amount of deduction u/s 10A, expenditure excluded from export turnover were also to be excluded from total turnover. (AY. 2008-09 to 2010-11)

McMl Systems Pvt. Ltd. v. ACIT (2019) 75 ITR 656 (Bang) (Trib)

  1. 10AA : Special economic zones – Determination of profits where profits disclosed by assessee higher than ordinary profits – No arrangement between assessee and comparable companies to enable assessee to earn super normal profits – Concept of applying profit level indicators applied in determination of arm’s length price of international transactions not applicable for determination of profits for computation of exemption – AO is directed to allow entire deduction. [S. 10A(7), 10AA(9), 80IA(10), 92CA]

The assessee provided various services in the field of engineering, information technology enabled services and business support services to its associated enterprises and claimed the exemption under S. 10AA of the Act. The AO in the draft assessment order proposed an addition of ₹ 2.53 crore alleging that the assessee had claimed excess exemption under S. 10AA of the Act, on the ground that operating profit to operating cost of the assessee was 150.55 per cent as against 27.72 per cent operating cost of the comparable companies. The Dispute Resolution Panel upheld the reduction of exemption under S. 10AA of the Act. On appeal, Tribunal held that the Transfer Pricing Officer had accepted the profit level indicator shown by the assessee at 150.55% when compared with the mean margins of the comparable companies at 27.72%. The Assessing Officer’s view that the assessee showing such high operating profit had earned super normal profits when compared with the margins of comparable companies was not tenable as the concept of profit level indicator, and the operating profit which had been adopted by the Assessing Officer was relevant for comparability for transfer pricing analysis and could not be used for holding the assessee to have earned super normal profits in carrying on its business. The officer had to look at the net profit shown by the assessee, which in the present year was 63% only. The basic condition for application of the provisions of section 10AA of the Act was an arrangement between the parties to enable the assessee to earn super normal profits. Neither the TPO nor the AO or the DRP had pointed out any such arrangement between the assessee and the comparable companies. In the absence thereof, the provisions of S. 10AA(9) read with S. 80-IA(10) of the Act were not attracted. There was no merit in invoking the provisions of S. 10AA(9) read with S. 80-IA(10) of the Act in the case of the assessee. The TPO having accepted the transactions to be at arm’s length and where the assessee was raising invoices on man hour basis, in line with the third party agreement and where the net profit was shown by the assessee at 63%, the concept of operating profit/operating cost could not be the basis for benchmarking the profits of any business. Hence, the AO was directed to allow the deduction claimed under S. 10AA of the Act in entirety. (AY. 2012-13)

Eaton Technologies Pvt. Ltd. v. Dy. CIT (2019) 75 ITR 675 (Pune)(Trib.)

  1. 11 : Property held for charitable purposes – Failure to file return – Return is filed in pursuance of notice u/s 148 – Entitle to exemption as applicable to charitable Trust – Failure to produce evidence in support of its claim of electricity expenses – Such amount had to be excluded while considering application of income – S.40(a)(ia), 40A(3) and S. 43B falls in Chapter IV-D which are applicable for computing profits and gains of business or profession and Chapter IV-D is not applicable in respect of charitable trust or institution whose income is to be computed under S 11 and 12 falling under Chapter-III. S. 37(1), Explanation is not applicable to charitable trust. Capital expenditure is to be allowed as application of income. [S. 12, 37(1), 40(a)(ia) 40A (3) 43B, 139, 139(4A), 147, 148]

Tribunal held that failure to file return under S. 139(4A) cannot be interpreted to mean that income cannot be computed in case of a charitable trust under S. 11 of the Act. Once return has been filed in response to notice issued under S. 148, provisions of Act shall apply as if such return were a return required to be furnished under S. 139 and, thus, return filed under section 148 is treated as return filed under S. 139. which will include S. 139(4A) of the Act. Oce such return is treated as return filed under S. 139, then all provisions of Act shall apply which will include S. 11. A new clause (ba) which has been inserted in section 12A by Finance Act, 2017 to put a further condition w.e.f 1-4-2018 of furnishing return within time allowed under section 139(4A) has been made applicable from assessment year 2018-19 on wards. Failure to produce evidence in respect of electricity expenses, amount to be excluded while computing application of income. S. 40(a)(ia), 40A(3) and S. 43B fall in Chapter IV-D which are applicable for computing profits and gains of business or profession and, thus, they are not applicable in respect of charitable trust or institution whose income is to be computed under Chapter-III and, accordingly, no disallowance or adjustment can be made while determining income of society under S. 11 and 12 of the Act. Penalty was levied by bank for mortgaging a property without permission of prescribed authority on assessee-society by invoking Explanation to S. 37 is not applicable to charitable Trust since provisions of Chapter IV-D, i.e., S28 to 44D are applicable while computing income of business or profession and these provisions are not applicable in respect of charitable institution whose income is to be computed under S 11 and 12 falling under Chapter III of the Act As per section 11, income of a eligible institution to extent of which such income is applied to charitable purpose in India is not to be included in total income and application of income towards charitable purposes include application towards acquisition of assets, i.e., capital expenditure. (AY. 2006-07, 2009-10)

United Educational Society v. JCIT (2019) 74 ITR 11 / 178 ITD 716 (Delhi) (Trib.)

  1. 12A : Registration – Trust or institution – Object clause – Registration cannot be refused on the ground that the Trust Deed does not contain “dissolution clause” and not registering with the Registrar of Societies [S.2(15), 11, 12AA]

On reference to third member,the third member held that, the only requirement for granting registration is that the objects of the society should be charitable in nature and activities are genuine (i) A trust may be of a public charitable nature even if the control of the trust property is not vested in the public but is retained by the settlors, (ii) Registration u/s. 12A cannot be declined on the ground that the Trust Deed does not contain “dissolution clause”. This is totally irrelevant & beyond the scope of enquiry contemplated u/s. 12A. of the Act, (iii) Registration cannot be refused for non furnishing of registration with the Registrar of Societies. Registration with the Registrar of Societies is not a precondition for granting registration u/s. 12A. (ITA No. 53/ASR/2017, dt. 08.01.2020)

Shri Dhar Sabha Vaishno Devi v. CIT(E) (TM) Amristar) (Trib.), www.itatonline.org

  1. 12AA : Procedure for registration – Trust or institution – No defects in the object of the society or doubted the genuineness – Denial of registration is held to be not valid [S. 2(15), 11],

The Assessee was carrying on social, spiritual, & charitable activities of operating a homeopathy dispensary and organizing camps for blood donation & sermons. The Commissioner denied the registration u/s. 12AA applied by the Assessee by giving certain general remarks. On Appeal, the Tribunal held that the commissioner has to consider the twin requirement (i) objects of the assessee-society, and (ii) the genuineness of its activity. When the commissioner has not pointed out any defect in the object of the society or doubted the genuineness of its activities, the registration u/s. 12AA cannot be denied. (AY. 2017-18)

Acharya Shri Tulsi Kalyan Kendra (Regd.) v. CIT(E) (2019) 72 ITR 14 (Amritsar)(Trib)

  1. 28(i) : Business income – Letting out shopping mall/business centres by providing host of services/facilities/amenities – Income derived assessable as business income and not as income from house property [S.22]

The main object of the assessee company was carrying on the business of letting out its commercial properties. The assessee company constructed a shopping mall/business centre and had let out the said property. Further assessee company maintained and provided necessary service for proper upkeep of such properties in order to earn income by letting and/or leasing thereof income. The AO held that income derived from letting out of house property would always be taxable under the head ‘income from house property’. The CIT(A) deleted the said addition treating the same as Business Income. Tribunal while allowing the appeal held that, income is attached to immovable property, cannot be sole criteria for such income as income from house property, to find out that what is primary object of assessee while exploiting such property, assessee-company had developed shopping malls/business centres on properties owned by it and had let out same to various users by providing host of services/facilities/amenities in said malls/business centres, it could be said that basic intention of assessee was commercial exploitation of its properties by developing them as shopping malls/business centres and, therefore, income derived from such activities are business income’ and not as income from house property. (AY. 2012-13, 2013-14)

DCIT v. ATC Realtors (P.) Ltd. (2019) 178 ITD 293 (Guwahati)(Trib.)

  1. 28(i) : Business income – Compensation – Amount received towards professional goodwill – Management of the Company was vested in the Board of Directors – AO failed to establish that person receiving the amount is managing whole or substantially the whole of the affairs of the Company – Cost of such managerial right being indeterminate, computation provisions fails – amount not taxable as capital gains [S. 4, 28(ii)(a), 55(2)]

Dismissing Revenue’s appeal, Tribunal held that since the AO has not established that assessee was the person who was managing the whole or substantially the whole of the affairs of the Company, the amount received towards professional goodwill was not chargeable under S. 28(ii)(a) of the Act. Further, AO has not ascertained as to what was the cost of ‘management right’ for computing capital gains and S. 55(2) does not specify such cost to be taken as Nil (no deemed cost of acquisition provided in the statute), hence computation mechanism fails and no capital gains can be computed in present case.
(AY. 2009-10)

DCIT v. Dr. Sandeep Dave (2019) 201 TTJ 683 / 182 DTR 109 (Raipur) (Trib)

  1. 28(i): Business loss – Real estate business – Advance to parties – Amount written off for commercial reasons – Loss is allowable as business loss

Tribunal held that advance given to parties were written off for commercial reasons,
hence the loss is allowable as business loss (AY. 2012-13).

ACIT v. Bhosale Builders and Developers P. Ltd. (2019) 74 ITR 67 (SN) (Pune) (Trib)

  1. 36(1)(iii) : Interest on borrowed capital – Interest paid to relatives and non-relatives – Difference between rate of interest charged by private money – lender and that charged by bank bound to exist – Assessee paying interest after deducting tax at source – AO failed to show that assessee utilised loan for purpose other than business – Interest expenses is held to be allowable

The Tribunal held that the assessee paid interest at 18% to relatives as well as to non-relatives. There was bound to be a difference between the interest charged by the bank and the interest charged by a private lender as for obtaining loans from bank, the assessee needed to maintain a margin and there were other expenses charged by the bank in the form of bank charges, penalty, etc. Therefore, the basis for disallowance made by the authorities was not correct. The assessee had made payments of interest after deducting tax at source and it was not the case of the authorities that the loans were not utilised for business purposes. Therefore, disallowance deleted. (AY. 2014-15)

Anurag Rastogi v. ITO (2019) 75 ITR 8 (Luck) (Trib)

  1. 36(1)(vii) : Bad debt – Non furnishing of TDS certificate amounts to amount due – Allowable as bad debt – Cannot be disallowed on ground that it was not within time prescribed under S. 155(14) of the Act
    [S. 37(1), 155(14)]

Assessee claimed the non receipt of TDS certificate as revenue expenditure. The AO held that the write off of TDS could not be allowed to the assessee. Further, he observed, non-furnishing of TDS certificate could not be treated as debt due to the assessee from the persons who had deducted tax at source. Therefore, provision of S. 36(1)(vii) could not be applied. On appeal, the CIT (A) held that that withholding of tax by the deductor amounted to debt owed by him to the deductee and in the event of non-receipt of such debt, deduction would be eligible to the assessee under S. 36(1)(vii) as the conditions prescribed therein are fulfilled. However, he held that assessee’s claim could not be allowed in view of the provisions of S. 155(14), since assessee had not claimed the deduction in the computation of income filed along with the return of income. Accordingly, he disallowed assessee’s claim. On appeal the Tribunal held that, though, tax was deducted at source in earlier assessment years, however, the assessee could not get credit of such TDS amount due to non-furnishing of TDS certificate by deductors. Undisputedly, the TDS amount is nothing but a part of income accruing to the assessee. It is also a fact that the assessee has offered the gross income including TDS in the respective assessment years. Therefore, to that extent, non-allowance of TDS credit to the assessee due to non-receipt of TDS certificates amounts to loss of income. Relied on CIT v. Shreyans Industries Ltd. [2008] 303 ITR 393 (Punj. & Har.) (HC). The decision of the P & H High Court in the aforesaid case with regard to write off of TDS was not a subject matter of dispute before the Supreme Court, therefore, the contention of the revenue that the decision of the P & H High Court, has been reversed by the Supreme Court, is not correct interpretation of the legal position, as the subject matter of dispute before the Supreme Court was on a different issue. In view of the aforesaid, the AO is directed to allow assessee’s claim of write off of TDS. (AY. 2005-06 to 2009-10)

DCIT v. AGC Network Ltd. (2020) 180 ITD 204 (Mum) (Trib.)

  1. 37(1) : Business expenditure – Disallowance – Providing gifts to Medical practitioners by pharmaceutical companies – CBDT circular on prohibition of acceptance of gifts by medical practitioners – AO made ad hoc addition – Providing gifts in lieu of sales promotion expenses – CBDT circular silent about pharmaceutical companies – Circular had no retrospective effect – Disallowance deleted

During assessment proceedings, AO noticed that assessee had debited an amount to P&L account towards gift/sales promotion expenses. The expenditure incurred was for providing gift to Doctors/Medical Practitioners. As per CBDT circular No. 5/2012, Medical Practitioners were prohibited from accepting gift, travel facility, hospitality, cash or monetary grant from pharmaceutical companies as per Indian Medical Council Regulation. The AO made addition on ad-hoc basis considering 40% to have been spent for presenting gift articles to doctors in India. The CIT(A) confirmed AO’s action. The assessee contended that said gift items bearing assesses name and logo were only for sales promotion. The reason for making an ad-hoc disallowance of 40% was, CBDT Circular No. 5/2012, wherein, prohibition imposed by IMC with regard to acceptance of gift by medical practitioner/doctor which was imposed w.e.f. 10th December 2009. The prohibition imposed by IMC did not talk about pharmaceutical companies. CBDT Circular referred to by Departmental Authorities would not apply retrospectively. Allowing the assesses ground, the tribunal deleted the disallowance made.

ACIT v. J. B. Chemicals & Pharmaceuticals Ltd. (2019) 177 DTR 378 (Mum)(Trib.)

  1. 37(1) : Business expenditure – Self made vouchers – Ad hocdisallowance is not justified [S.145]

While allowing the appeal of the Assessee, the Tribunal held that, when the telephones were used in the business premises of the assessee and the expenses were verifiable from the telephone bills the expenses could not be disallowed on mere suspicion. Similarly, the AO had not doubted the travelling expenditure incurred by the assessee and if the expenses were not found to be excessive having regard to the nature of business and volume of business of the assessee such an ad hoc disallowance on personal element was not justified. Further, in the case of building repair and maintenance expenses, the expenditure was incurred in cash and the assessee had produced only self-made vouchers and in the absence of supporting documentary evidence, the 10 per cent disallowance of expenditure was justified. If office expenses were paid in cash and supported by the self-made vouchers. If the expenditure was not found to be excessive and it was inevitable for the business of the assessee petty expenses were incurred by the assessee on day-to-day basis in cash and without any vouchers. Once the expenditure was not found to be excessive having regard to the nature of business and volume of the business of the assessee the ad hoc disallowance was not justified.
(AY. 2012-13)

Swastik Oil Industries v. Dy. CIT (2019)76 ITR 392 (Jaipur)(Trib.)

  1. 37(1) : Business expenditure – Levy of interest for withholding payment of VAT – Compensatory interest u/s. 30(2) – For delay in payment of additional tax under MVAT – Penal interest u/s 30(4) – Concealment or furnishing of inaccurate particulars of income – Paid by assessee to buy peace and end litigation with MVAT authorities – AO asked to bifurcate these payments – Compensatory interest allowed – Penal Interest disallowed [VAT S.30(2) 30(4)]

During assessment proceeding, AO noted from Tax Audit Report that assessee had paid a penalty which was not disallowed by it while computing income chargeable to income tax. Assessee submitted that such penalty was paid to avoid litigation with Sales Tax Department on an amount of tax for bogus purchases. AO held that such amount was a penalty levied by Sales Tax Department for violation of law committed by assessee which need to be disallowed u/s. 37 and which also was certified by CA in tax audit report. AO completed assessment after making disallowance in this regard. CIT(A) allowed assesses claim. The tribunal held that interest u/s. 30(2) was compensatory in nature for delay in payment of additional tax under MVAT computed from original due date of payment of the MVAT liability due to availment of wrong ITC, on alleged bogus purchases, till said additional tax liability of VAT was paid to the authorities. Whereas, levy of interest u/s 30(4) of MVAT Act had germane to detection of short payment of VAT by way of concealment or furnishing of inaccurate particulars of income in original return of VAT filed with MVAT Department due to infraction of law, which is detected after commencement of such special events such as audit, inspection, survey, search under MVAT Act. The AO was directed to bifurcate payments of interest made u/s 30(2) and 30(4) of MVAT Act, allowing only the compensatory interest u/s. 30(2) of MVAT Act. Penal interest u/s. 30(4) of MVAT Act was disallowed. Revenues appeal was partly allowed.
(AY. 2009-10, 2012-13)

ACIT v. Gini & Jony Ltd. (2019) 178 DTR 114 (Mum)(Trib.)

  1. 37(1) : Business expenditure –Compensation for not complying with terms of contract – Civil consequence for not complying with certain terms of contract and had nothing to do with any offence – No violation of law – No disallowances can be made by applying the explanation 1

The AO held that the expenditure as penalty levied on it for not complying with the terms of the contract, such penalty paid for violation of the contract in the course of the conduct of business could not be regarded as a deductible expenditure. The CIT (A) deleted the addition. On appeal the Tribunal held that the contract between the assessee and the buyers was clear in its terms that there was a specification as to the quality of coal that had to be supplied and should there be any variation in such quality, the price would be adjusted accordingly. In the case of supply of coal with the high moisture under low grass calorific value, the buyer would make deduction on such account. Further, the case of the assessee had been that it did not pass on the liability incurred on this count to its sellers. The Assessing Officer should have considered this aspect as to the possibility of the assessee passing on such liability to its sellers, which was not possible in the case of the penalty paid for an offence or infraction of law. The inability to meet the contractual obligation by the assessee could not be termed as an offence or infraction of law so as to deny the claim of the assessee by invoking Explanation 1 to S. 37(1). Merely because the assessee categorised the claim under “penalty levied on it for not complying with the terms of the contract”, it was not permissible to conclude that such penalty was in respect of any offence or infraction of law committed by the assessee so as to invoke the provisions under Explanation 1 to section 37(1). The expression “penalty was levied on the assessee for not complying with the terms of the contract”, clearly indicated that it was a civil consequence for not complying with certain terms of contract and had nothing to do with any offence. (AY. 2012-13)

Dy. CIT v. Mahavir Multitrade P. Ltd. (2020)77 ITR 165 (Delhi) (Trib)

  1. 37(1) : Business expenditure – fine/penalty levied upon it by European commission for violating European union competition laws by way of accepting non-compete settlement amount from a European company – Payment could not be disallowed as per Explanation 1 to S. 37(1) of the Act – Allowability of claim as business loss – Matter remanded for verification. [General Clauses Act,1897, S.3(38), Indian Evidence Act, 1872, S. 57(1), Art. 13]

Assessee-company paid fine/penalty levied upon it by European Commission for violating European Union Competition laws by way of accepting non-compete settlement amount from a European company, such payment could not be disallowed as per Explanation 1 to S.37(1) of the Act. The Tribunal held that what has to be disallowed under Explanation 1 to S.37(1) of the Act is a payment made for contravention of laws in force in India and not of any foreign country. The laws are specific to each of the countries according to their rules and regulations and an offence in one country may not be so in another country. Accordingly addition confirmed by the CIT (A) is deleted. As regards whether allowable as business loss as the income was offered in the earlier year, the matter remanded to the file of AO for verification. (AY. 2014-15)

Mylan Laboratories Ltd. v. DCIT (2020) 180 ITD 558 (Hyd) (Trib.)

  1. 37(1) : Business expenditure – Festival expenditure – Books of account not rejected – Disallowance of 25% of festival expenses cannot be disallow when books of account were duly audited and no discrepancy was found [S.145]

Tribunal while dismissing the appeal of the revenue held that books of account had been duly audited and no discrepancy was found by revenue authorities, further observed that there was increased turnover and also increased profit during year, hence, increase in festival expenditure could not be treated as disallowable expenditure. (AY. 2012-13)

ACIT v. HAL Offshore Ltd. (2019) 178 ITD 272 (Delhi)(Trib.)

  1. 37(i) : Business expenditure – Parking fees – Ad hoc disallowance of 20% disallowance – Books of account not rejected – Disallowance is held to be not valid [S.143(3)

Dismissing the appeal of the revenue the Tribunal held that disallowance of 20 per cent ad hoc disallowance of parking fee, without rejecting books of account not permissible.
(AY. 2012-2013, 2013-2014)

DCIT v. ATC Realtors (P.) Ltd. (2019) 178 ITD 293 (Guwahati)(Trib.)

  1. 37(1) : Business expenditure – Ad-hocdisallowance of 10% of total expenses – Books of account not rejected – Submitted the details of expenses – Ad-hoc disallowance is held to be not justified [S.145]

Allowing the appeal of the assessee the Tribunal held that since assessee had submitted complete details of these expenses and no defects in books of account were brought on record by revenue, ad hoc disallowance of these expenses to tune of 10 per cent by AO is held to be not justified. (AY. 2011-12)

TUV India (P.) Ltd. v. DCIT (2019) 75 ITR 364 / 179 ITD 238 (Mum) (Trib.)

  1. 40(a)(ia) : Amounts not deductible – Deduction at source – Non-resident – Copy editing, indexing and proof reading requiring only knowledge of language and not expertise in subject matter of text – Services rendered by non-residents not technical services – Tax deduction is not required – No disallowance can be made [S. 9(1)(1), 195 (6)]

The Assessee, had hired the services of a non-resident foreign entity, which mainly consisted of language translation. The services rendered involved copy editing, indexing and proof reading required only knowledge of the language and did not require necessary expertise in the subject matter of text. Thus during the assessment year 2011-12, assessee made payments to the non-resident entity of ₹ 2,95,31,708/- without deducting tax at source, on the ground that services rendered were not technical in nature and therefore no tax was liable to be deducted under section 195 of the Act. The AO disallowed the payments on the ground that tax was required to be deducted on payments made to non-residents for services rendered.

The CIT(A) found that since the non-resident entity did not have any permanent establishment or a business connection within the meaning of S. 9(1)(i) in India. Therefore he held that since the present case was not hit with the provisions of S. 9(1)(i) the payments received by the non-resident entity was not to be assessed as business income in India. However, he found that the services rendered by non-resident entity was technical in nature.

On Appeal, the Tribunal held that, language translation was not a technical service. The copy editing, indexing and proof reading required only knowledge of the language and did not require necessary expertise in the subject matter of text. Thus, the services rendered by the non-residents were not technical services and the payment received by the non-residents from the assessee was not taxable in India. S. 195(6) requires the assessee to furnish information but did not require the assessee to deduct tax at time of payment. Hence, there was no question of disallowance under S. 40(a)(ia) for consideration in the appeal. (AY. 2011-12)

Dy. CIT v. Integra Software Services Pvt. Ltd. (2019)76 ITR 491 (Chennai) (Trib)

  1. 40(a)(ia) : Amounts not deductible – Deduction at source – Failure to deduct tax at source – Filing Forms 15G and form no 15H before CIT(A) – Addition is unsustainable – CIT(A) ought to have verified from the banks – AO is directed to delete the addition [S.251]

AO disallowed interest paid to two persons for failure by the assessee to deduct tax at source on the payments. The assessee filed form 15G and form 15H before the CIT(A) but the latter did not consider them. On appeal the Tribunal held that the assessee had filed form 15G or form 15H. The CIT(A) should have considered the evidence supplied by the assessee and if he was not satisfied, got it verified from the bank. The AO is directed to delete the addition. (AY. 2008-09)

Hiralal Jain v. ITO (2020)77 ITR 333 (Indore) (Trib)

  1. 40(a)(ia) : Amounts not deductible – Deduction at source – Contractor – Sub-contractor – PAN of transporters at the time of payment – No disallowances can be made [Ss.194C(6), 194C(7)]

Dismissing the appeal of the revenue the Tribunal held that all that was required for non-deduction of tax at source on payment to transporters was that the latter furnishes his PAN to the person responsible for paying or crediting the amount to him. The primary onus was thus on the recipient to furnish his PAN to the payer and the payer, on receipt of such PAN, was under a statutory obligation not to deduct tax at source on such payments. Further, the payer was under a statutory obligation to furnish the information in prescribed forms to the Income tax authority. As far as the Assessee’s non-compliance with S. 194C(7) of the Act were concerned, there were separate penal provisions in terms of S. 234E and S. 271H of the Act. In the instant case, once the Assessee was in receipt of PAN and had not deducted tax at source, it had complied with the first statutory obligation cast upon it and could not penalized for non-deduction of tax at source u/s. 40(a)(ia) of the Act. Merely because there was a failure by Assessee to furnish the prescribed information to the income tax authorities, Assessee should not suffer thirty percent of disallowance of expenditure u/s. 40(a)(ia) of the Act. (AY. 2015-16)

ACIT v. Arihant Trading Co. (2019) 72 ITR 11 (SN) (Jaipur) (Trib.)

  1. 41(1) : Profits chargeable to tax – Remission or cessation of trading liability – No addition can be made if AO has not brought any evidence to show that liability has ceased to exist – No additions can be made unless liability has not been written off in books of account [S.145]

The AO has made additions under section 41(1) of the Act stating that the liability has been outstanding since a long time and no transactions have been occurred since then. The Tribunal relied on the Gujarat High Court ruling the case of Bhogilal Ramjibhai Atara (43 taxmann 313) which has held that even if the liability is found to be non-genuine from the inception then also 41(1) of the Act was no solution for it. The Tribunal held that revenue authorities has not shown that the liability has ceased to exist and the assessee has not written back and continue to show the same in liabilities outstanding in the balance sheet. Hence, following the above decision of the Gujarat High court in the case of Bhogilal Ramjibhai Atara (43 Taxmann 313), the Tribunal deleted the adjustment made under section 41(1) of the Act. (AY. 2013-14)

Shivacid India Private Ltd. v ITO (2019) 76 ITR 76 (SN) (Ahd) (Trib)

  1. 45: Capital gains – Transfer – Conversion – AOP converted in to a company limited by shares – New company never remained in existence simultaneously –
    Not liable to capital gain tax [S.2(47)]

During the year, assessee-society was converted into a company limited by shares. AO held that there was transfer of assets owned by assessee to another legal entity within meaning of S. 2(47) which would attract capital gain tax under S 45 (1) of the Act. CIT (A) held that that there was no transfer within meaning of S 45 (1) of the Act because there were no two parties transferor and transferee, accordingly he deleted addition made by the AO. On appeal by the revenue the Tribunal held that till date of conversion, assessee-AOP remained in existence and moment conversion took place, company came into existence. However, AOP and company never remained in existence simultaneously. As per S. 45(1) transfer of capital asset was possible only when there was simultaneous existence of transferor and transferee. in absence of two entities at same time, consideration could not pass from transferor to transferee and, as a result, provisions of S.45 (1) were not applicable. Accordingly the order of CIT (A) is affirmed. (AY. 2001-02)

ACIT v. Escorts Heart Institute & Research Centre. (2019) 178 ITD 362 (Delhi) (Trib.)

  1. 45 : Capital gains – Taxable in the hands of owner and not in the hands of General Power of Attorney holder [S. 2 (47)

Assessee holding GPA for certain persons sold certain immovable property belonging to them during relevant assessment year. He did not offer capital gains tax on said transaction contending that he had executed sale deed as a General Power of Attorney Holder (GPA) and he had not received any amount from transaction. The AO held that the assessee had sold the plot to his daughter not only as a GPA holder, but also as a owner of the property and had earned the capital gain therefrom. He accordingly brought the capital gains to tax. On appeal, the CIT(A) confirmed the order of the AO Tribunal held that since the assessee was not owner of property, capital gain could not be brought to tax in his hand. Followed Suraj Lamps & Industries (P.) Ltd v. State of Haryana (2012 340 ITR 1 (SC) (AY. 2008-09)

Veerannagiri Gopal Reddy v. ITO (2019) 72 ITR 578 / 179 ITD 305 (Hyd.) (Trib.)

  1. 45 : Capital gains – Gains from equities – Entire documentary evidence not disputed and no rebuttal to explanation of assessee – no adverse materials against assessee – No proper enquiry conducted on documentary evidence filed – Assessee entering into genuine transaction of sale and purchase of shares – Entitled to exemption [S.10(38), 68, 115BBE].

The Assessee had entered into a transaction of sale of shares held in a company. The sale took place through Stock Exchange via a registered Stock Broker after payment of Securities Transaction Tax. Assessee claimed exemption under S. 10(38) in respect of the said sale transaction. During the assessment proceeding, the assesse submitted all the relevant documents supporting the purchase of shares made in cash, with sale contract notes and bank statements and dematerialised statements. However, the price of shares skyrocketed without the essential parameters for increase in price. Hence the AO held such transaction to be a sham transaction in the Assessment order passed. The AO treated the gains as unexplained cash credit under S. 68 and taxed the same at 30 per cent under S. 115BBE in the hands of the Assessee. The CIT (A) upheld the AO’s order. The Tribunal, on appeal held – Documentary evidence provided cannot be brushed aside on probabilities and suspicions without pointing out the defect therein. Prices of shares depend upon innumerable factors. Reliance placed upon the statement of Investigation Wing cannot be applied to all the cases blindly. Securities and Exchange Board of India in a subsequent decision, absolved the companies involved in artificial rigging of price of shares, this fact vitiates the revenues case. Held that the Assessee is entitled to claim exemption under S. 10(38) of the Act. (AY. 2014 -15)

Asha Luthra (Ms.) v. ITO (2019) 76 ITR 432 (Delhi)(Trib.)

  1. 45(3) : Capital gains – Transfer of capital asset to firm – AOP – BOI – Full value of consideration – Stamp valuation – Deemed full value of consideration shall be considered for the purpose of computation of capital gain as per which the amount recorded in the books of account of the firm shall be taken as a full value of consideration – Provision of
    S. 50C is not applicable – Special provision of S.45(3) override the general provision of S.50C of the Act. [S.45, 48, 50C]

The assessee transferred an immoveable property as a capital contribution in to ATL Hospitality. The assessee while computing the capital gain on transfer of land in to partnership has taken the value as recorded in the books of the firm as per provision of S.45(3) of the Act i.e. ₹ 5.60 crore as the full value of consideration deemed to have been received or accrued as a result of transfer of capital asset to the partnership firm. The AO applied the provisions of S.50C and valued at ₹ 9,41,78,500,being the value determined by the Stamp Valuation Authority at the time of registration of the supplementary partnership deed. The CIT (A) up held the order of the AO. On appeal the Tribunal held that a plain reading of provisions of S. 45(3) makes it clear that it comes in to operation only on a special cases of transfer between partnership firm and partners and in such circumstances, a deemed full value of consideration shall be considered for the purpose of computation of capital gain as per which the amount recorded in the books of account of the firm shall be taken as a full value of consideration. Though the provision of S.45(3) is not specific provision overrides the other provisions of the Act. Importing a deeming fiction provided in S. 50C of the Act cannot extended to another deeming fiction created by the statute by way of S. 45(3) to deal with special case of transfer. Accordingly the finding of the CIT (A) is reversed and appeal of the assessee is allowed. (ITA No. 6050/M/2016 / ITA No 1614 / Mum/2016 dt 29-12-2017 (AY. 2012-13)

(Editorial : decision in Carlton Hotel Pvt. Ltd. v. ACIT (2009) 122 ITTJ 515 (Luck) (Trib) is distinguished, High Court set aside the order of the Tribunal, CIT v. Carlton Hotel Pvt. Ltd. (2017) 399 ITR 611 (All) (HC), SLP of the assessee is dismissed, Carlton Hotel Pvt Ltd v. ACIT (SC). Followed CIT v. Moon Mills Ltd (1966) 59 ITR 574(SC), also refer, Shri Sarrangan Ashok v. ITO, ITA No 544 /Chny/ 2019 dt 19-08 -2019 (AY. 2015 -16), D. R. Yadav v R. K. Singh (2003) 7 SCC 110, ACIT v. Moti Ramnanad Sagar, ITA NO 2049/Mum/ 2017 / 1690 /Mum/ 2017 dt 28-02-2019 (AY. 2012 -13) ITO v. Chiraayu Estate & Dev Pvt. Ltd. ITA No. 263/Mum/2010 dt. 24 -08, 2011 (AY. 2006-07) ITO v. Sheila Sen, ITA No. 554 /Kol/2016 dt 7-09-2018 (AY. 2006-07) Navneet Kumar Thakkar v. ITO (2008) 110 ITD 525 (Jodhpur)(Trib))

Amartara v. DCIT (Mum) (Trib) (UR)

  1. 48 : Capital gains – Computation – VAT payment made by assessee at time of transfer of trademark is allowable as deduction [S.45 48]

The assessee had sold one of its registered trademark for certain consideration and paid VAT to State Government on sale consideration. Since VAT was paid wholly and exclusively in connection with ‘transfer’ of trademark, said amount was claimed as deduction under S. 48 of the Act. AO held that cost of such capital asset was to be deemed as ‘NIL’ and, therefore, expenditure on VAT could not be allowed as deduction while computing capital gains. CIT (A) deleted the addition. Tribunal held that since assessee had to mandatorily pay statutory levy at time of ‘transfer of intangible to transferee, said expenditure was incurred wholly and exclusively in connection with transfer of capital asset and was allowable as deduction. (AY. 2008 -09)

Bata India Ltd. v. DCIT (2020) 180 ITD 464 (Kol) (Trib.)

  1. 54 : Capital gains – Profit on sale of property used for residence –

Exemption can be claimed on transfer of any number of residential houses provided the capital gain arising thereon is invested in a proper manner within the prescribed time limit. [S.45]

The Assessee had purchased three flats on the same floor of the building by three separate agreements. Subsequently, the three flats were combined into a single residential flat. During the relevant previous year, the Assessee had sold the combined residential flat under three sale agreements on account of legal requirements. The Assessee had claimed deduction under S. 54 of the Act for the long term capital gains arising on sale of the aforesaid combined residential flat. However, the AO held hat the Assessee had sold three flats by way of three separate agreements and accordingly, allowed deduction under S. 54 of the Act only on sale of one flat and taxed the long term capital gains arising on sale of the balance two flats. On appeal, the CIT(A) held that the three adjoining flats were merged and made into one residential unit and the Assessee also used it as one residential house. There is one electricity meter in respect of the three flats. Further, the CIT(A) observed that there is no restriction under S. 54 of the Act that exemption is allowable only in respect of sale of one residential house. Accordingly, the CIT(A) held that even if the Assessee sells more than one residential houses in the same year and the capital gain is invested in a new residential house, the claim of deduction cannot be denied if the other conditions of S. 54 are fulfilled. On appeal by the Department, the Tribunal upheld the findings of the CIT(A) relying on the decision of the Hon’ble Bombay High Court in the case of CIT v. Devdas Naik (2014) 366 ITR 12 (Bom) (HC). (AY 2011-12)

ACIT v. Bipin N. Sagar (2019) 70 ITR 16 (SN) (Mum) (Trib)

  1. 54 : Capital gains – Profit on sale of property used for residence – No requirement that residential house should be constructed in a particular manner – Only requirement is residential use as against commercial use – Assessee constructing ground floor, first floor and second floor – Assessee keeping rights of ground floor and second floor with roof rights of first floor – Entitled to exemption [S. 54F]

The assessee entered into a collaboration agreement with one Mr. K for dismantling an old building and construction of ground floor, first floor and second floor. In terms of the collaboration agreement, the assessee kept the rights of ground floor and second floor with roof rights of the first floor. The assessee declared the fair market value of the property at ₹ 1,25,10,000 for the assessment year 2016-17. After reducing the indexed cost of acquisition at ₹ 21,16,515, he declared long-term capital gains at ₹ 1,03,93,485. The assessee then claimed exemption under section 54 of the Income-tax Act, 1961 at ₹ 1,24,50,000 on the long-term capital gains. The Assessing Officer did not accept the claim of exemption under section 54 on the ground that the assessee had sold the rights of the first floor to the builder and kept the ground and second floors to himself under the collaboration agreement. Therefore, he treated the long-term capital gains on proportionate sale value of the first floor which came to ₹ 34,64,495 (one-third of the long-term capital gains as calculated by the assessee at ₹ 1,03,93,485) as the deemed long-term capital gains on transfer of rights of the first floor to Mr. K and taxed it in the hands of the assessee. The Commissioner (Appeals) enhanced the income. On appeal :

Held, that sections 54 and 54F use the expression “a residential house” which is not “a residential unit”. Sections 54 and 54F require the assessee to acquire a “residential house” and so long as the assessee acquires a building, which may be constructed, for the sake of convenience, in such a manner as to consist of several units which can, if the need arises, be conveniently and independently used as an independent residence, the requirement of the section should be taken to have been satisfied. There is nothing in these sections which requires the residential house to be constructed in a particular manner. The only requirement is that it should be for residential use and not for commercial use. The fact that the residential house consists of several independent units cannot be permitted to act as an impediment to the allowance of the deduction under section 54 or section 54F. It is neither expressly nor by necessary implication prohibited. Thus, the assessee was entitled to exemption. (AY 2016-17)

Vinod Kumar Sharma v. ITO (2019) 76 ITR 72 (SN) (Delhi) (Trib)

  1. 54EC : Capital gains – Investment in bonds –Transferable Development Right (TDR) – Acquisition of immovable property is capital asset- Period of holding of TDR was to be calculated from date of acquisition of assessee’s property by municipality [S 2(14), 43(5), 45, 48]

In 1986, assessee’s immovable property was acquired by municipal corporation. Assessee got a right in Transferable Development Right (TDR) in lieu of acquisition of his immovable property. No TDR was allotted for long. On 17-8-1996, assessee entered into an MoU with third party for transfer of right in TDR though there was no TDR in hand Surplus derived from transfer of TDR rights had been assessed under head capital gains. In 2004, said MoU was cancelled because purchaser was not willing to wait anymore because of delay in allotment of TDRs by competent authority. The ssessee got a new buyer for right in TDR and, accordingly, one more MoU was entered into and right in TDR was transferred. The assessee invested the amount in capital gain bonds and claimed exemption u/s 54EC of the Act. The AO held that the transfer of right in the TDR is held to be short term capital gain and denied the exemption u/s 54EC of the Act. On appeal the CIT (A) held that gain on sale of TDR is speculative gain and assessed u/s. 43(5) of the Act and denied the exemption u/s. 54EC of the Act. On appeal the Tribunal held that as TDR was inextricably linked with immovable property and it flew from transfer of immovable property, TDR was a capital asset within meaning of S 2(14) of the Act. Accordingly the surplus from transfer of TDR would be capital gains; not speculative business profit. The fact that assessee had derived right in TDR by virtue of acquisition of immovable property by municipal authorities in year 1986 and such right was conferred on assessee from date of acquisition of property, subsequent cancellation of sale of TDR to third party could not be considered as purchase of TDR from a third party and, therefore, for purpose of determination of period of holding, period of holding of asset from date of acquisition of property by municipal authorities had to be considered, and date, when MoU was cancelled in year 2004 was not to be considered. If investments were made in NABARD Capital Gain Bonds, exemption claimed by assessee under S. 54EC was to be allowed. (AY. 2005-06)

Adi D. Vachha v. ITO (2019) 179 ITD 356 (Mum) (Trib.)

  1. 54F : Capital gains – Investment in a residential house – Developer failed to delivered possession – Delay in construction is not attributable to the assessee –Entitled to exemption [S.45]

Tribunal held that as per the agreement with the developer, the developer was supposed to hand over the possession of plot within 18 months from the date of the allotment letter. However, the developer did not deliver possession. Since the delay was not on the part of the assessee but on the part of the developer which is beyond the control of the assesse. Exemption is allowed to the assessee. (AY. 2013-14)

Abodh Borar v. ITO (2019) 76 ITR 30 (SN) (Delhi) (Trib.)

  1. 54F : Capital gains – Investment in a residential house – The words “in India” cannot be read into section 54F when Parliament in its legislative wisdom has deliberately not used the words. The assessee is entitled to exemption of the Act though he has acquired house property in a foreign country – The amendment to s. 54F by the Finance Act, 2014 w.e.f. 2015 is applicable only prospectively [S.45]

The assessee is an individual. He sold a site and claimed deduction u/s. 54/54F of the Act on the capital gain on sale of the property as he invested the capital gain in purchase of a residential house in Texas on 12.7.2013. The AO denied the exemption. On appeal the Tribunal held that The words “in India” cannot be read into section 54F when Parliament in its legislative wisdom has deliberately not used the words. The assessee is entitled to exemption of the Act though he has acquired house property in a foreign country- The amendment to S. 54F by the Finance Act, 2014 w.e.f. 2015 is applicable only prospectively. (ITA No 2015 of 2019 dt 10 -1 2020) (AY. 2013-14)

Rajasugumar Subramani v. ITO (Bang) (Trib) www.itatonline.org

  1. 54F: : Capital gains – Investment in a residential house – Letting out property on rent – Two adjacent bungalows – Two registered deed- Used as one unit – Entitle to exemption [S.22,45]

The assessee purchased two adjacent bungalows and claimed exemption u/s. 54F of the Act. AO allowed the exemption in respect of only one bungalow which was affirmed by the CIT(A). On appeal the Tribunal held that 2 units bearing separate numbers which were purchased by the assesee out of long -term capital gain income. Both the units are adjacent to each other and the same are single residential unit. Accordingly exemption was granted though there were two registries of the properties. Followed CIT v. Shri D.Anand Basappa (2009) 309 ITR 329/ 180 Taxman 4 (Karn) (HC) (ITA No. 1797 /Ahd/ 2018 dt
6-1-2020) (AY. 2015-16)

Mohammadanif Sultanali Pradhan v. DCIT (Ahd) (Trib) (UR)

  1. 54F: Capital gains – Investment in residential house – Purchase – Constructed in phased manner and payments was linked to stage of construction, it is a purchase and not construction of new asset – Exemption is allowable [S.45]

The assessee claimed u/s. 54F in respect of capital gains on sale of shares in respect of apartment buyer’s agreement entered with SEPL for purchase of a new residential apartment as per which the assessee was required to make a payment which was paid by assessee on various dates. The AO held that assessee had not purchased the new flat but had made payment towards instalment to the builder for construction of the property, therefore, as the new asset was constructed then time limit is there, i.e., the date of sale of original asset till the expiry of 3 years thereafter applied. The assessee had started investing in the new asset from 3 years and 11 months before the date of sale. Around 90% of the total investment in the new asset was made before the date of sale of the original asset. The AO held that assessee was not eligible for deduction u/s. 54F of the Act. Tribunal held that, assessee had sold shares, entered into an agreement with a builder for purchase of new residential flat which was constructed by builder in phased manner and payment of which was linked to stage of construction, it was a case of purchase and not construction of new asset hence eligible for deduction. (AY. 2011-12)

Kapil Kumar Agarwal v. DCIT (2019) 178 ITD 255 / 72 ITR 353 (Delhi)(Trib.)

  1. 54F : Capital gains – Investment in a residential house – Purchase of flat from builder – Date of allotment to be taken as date of acquisition of property – House consisted of several independent units – Exemption cannot be denied – New house need not be purchased exclusively in the name of the assesee – Invested prior to date of filing of return u/s. 139 (4) – Eligible for exemption [S.45, 139 (1), 139(4)]

Allowing the appeal of the assessee the Tribunal held that,while determining claim for deduction under S. 54F in respect of purchase of flat from builder, date of issuance of allotment letter by builder has to be taken as date of acquisition of property. In respect of purchase of a residential house, mere fact that said house consisted of several independent units could not be a ground for denying the exemption. For claiming exemption the new house need not be purchased by assessee in his own name exclusively. In order to claim deduction under section 54F, new residential house need not be purchased by assessee in his own name or exclusively in his name. Sale proceeds utilised in acquisition of new residential house prior to filing of return u/s 139 (4) is eligible for exemption. (AY. 2011-12)

Kamal Murlidhar Mokashi. (Mrs.) v. ITO (2019) 179 ITD 265 (Pune) (Trib.)

  1. 54F : Capital gains – Investment in a residential house – Payments towards purchase of house property – Deduction is available up to date of filing of return of income prescribed u/s. 139(4) [S.45, 139(1), 139(4)]

Allowing the appeal of the assessee the Tribunal held that in respect of payments made to purchase of residential house the deduction is available up to date of filing of return prescribed u/s 139 (4) of the Act. (AY. 2012-13)

Vatsala Asthana (Smt.) v. ITO (2019) 179 ITD 297 (Delhi) (Trib.)

  1. 56: Income from other sources – Share premium – Valuation of shares – Fair Market Value – Valuation considers various factors and not only balance sheet – Evidence on valuation. [S.56 (2) (viib), R11UA]

Assessee issued 70 lakh equity shares of ₹ 10/- each at a premium of ₹ 5 per share, receiving a total premium of ₹ 3.5 Crores. A.O. invoked the provisions of S. 56(2)(viib) and determined the fair market value of each share at ₹ 6.65/-. The premium received was added back to the total income of the assessee. The CIT(A) rejected the valuation of the assessee and A.O and applied rule 11UA to determine the value at ₹ 10.05/-. The assessee challenged the order before the Tribunal.

The assessee submitted that it had obtained the permission of the competent authority for the change of land use from agricultural to institutional for art, culture and convention centre. The total area of the land was 51366.94 sq. yards, while the circular rates of the institutional area were ₹ 22,000/- per sq. yard. The total value of land would come to ₹ 113 crore. After adding the total assets (9.18 lakh) and reducing the total liability of ₹ 46.56 crore, net asset value comes to ₹ 66.54 crore. If the net asset value is divided by the number of equity shares issued (10.10 lakh), the value of each share is ₹ 658.83.

The Tribunal accepted the assessee submissions, held the valuation of the shares should be made based on various factors and not merely on the financials/balance sheet as done by lower authorities. Further, it held that valuation could not be rejected, where it demonstrated the fair market value of the asset is more than the value of the balance sheet. (AY. 2014-15)

India Convention and Culture Centre Pvt. Ltd. v. ITO (2019)75 ITR 538 / 111 Taxmann.com 252 (Delhi) (Trib)

  1. 56 : Income from other sources – Definition of relative – Includes Adopted child – “blood relative” is not mandatory [S.56(2) (vi)]

It was the case of the assessee that out of his natural love and affection the donor has gifted amount to the assessee from his income/capital. The gifts were not liable to income tax in his hands under Income Tax Act as they were ‘capital receipts’. S. 56(2)(vi) also exclude gifts from individuals from certain specified relatives including ‘brother-in-law’ from the purview of taxation. Since the donor resides in Mumbai, it was not possible for him to come down to Baroda before the AO within such short notice. Although It was categorically mentioned in the said reply that the donor was a regular tax payer and is regularly assessed to tax for these years, the AO added ₹ 5,00,00,000/- in the hands of the assessee. The Learned CIT(A) deleted the addition. The Department contested that, the assessee is not a blood relative of Mr. N. It was submitted by the assessee that the assessee is an adopted child under the Hindu Law, mainly Hindu Adoption and Maintenance Act, 1956 the assessee is having same status as of the own child of a spouse in this case. Tribunal held that as the details of the donor starting from PAN number, capital gain statement, bank statement and others is annexed to the paper book, which was duly placed before the authorities below. It appears that when Shri NS not brought to the Learned AO by the assessee no further enquiry was conducted by him, no record against the assessee was also brought. Apart from that, the creditworthiness and/or genuineness of the transaction though doubted by the Learned AO, the same has not been proved by any cogent document in favour of the revenue. Further that, whether the gift so received by the assessee from his brother-in-law is exempted from tax under S. 56 of the Act has been considered on a wrong notion. Instead of relative as provided by the statute, “blood relative”. Hence, the Revenue’s appeal is dismissed. (AY. 2008-09, 2009-10)

Dy. CIT v. Arvind N. Nopany (2019) 174 DTR 313 (Ahd.)(Trib.)

  1. 56 : Income from other sources – Share premium – Two share holders – Brothers – Excess benefit was passed on to assessee was out of shareholding held by his brother-Provisions of S. 56(2)(viii)(c)(ii) would not apply-Balance sheet – Previous Balance Sheet which is audited and approved in AGM has to be taken into consideration, before allotment of shares. [S.56(2)(viii) (c) (ii), R.11U, 11UA].

Assessee acquired certain shares of a company at face value of ₹ 10 per share. As cost of acquisition of shares appeared to be much lesser than Fair Market Value (FMV), AO estimated FMV as per previous year balance sheet of company, and worked out taxable income under S 56(2)(vii)(c)(ii), as per rules 11U & 11UA. CIT deleted the addition. On appeal by revenue the Tribunal held that since prior to allotment of shares, existing shareholders, were only assessee and his brother, and whatever excess benefit was passed on to assessee was out of interest of shareholding held by his brother, provisions of S. 56(2)(viii)(c) (ii) would not apply. In case balance sheet is not drawn up on date of allotment, for arriving at FMV of shares under S. 56(2)(vii)(c)(ii), previous Balance Sheet which is audited and approved in AGM has to be taken into consideration, before allotment of shares. In case balance sheet is not drawn up on date of allotment, for arriving at FMV of shares under S 56(2)(vii)(c)(ii), previous Balance Sheet which is audited and approved in AGM has to be taken into consideration, before allotment of shares. (AY. 2014-15)

ACIT v. Y. Venkanna Choudary (2020) 180 ITD 166 (Vishakha) (Trib)

  1. 56 : Income from other sources – HUF – Gift – Amount received as gift from ‘HUF’, being its member, is a capital receipt not liable to tax – Revision is held to be not valid. [S. 4, 10(2), 56 (2) (vii), 263]

The assessee received a gift of ₹ 5,90,000/- from his ‘HUF’. The AO held that since the amount of said gift was more than ₹ 50,000/-, hence, the same was exigible to tax as ‘income from other sources’ under S 56(2)(vii) of the Act.

Subsequently, in course of reassessment proceedings, assessee submitted that ‘HUF’ being a group of relatives, hence, the gift by the ‘ ‘HUF’ to an individual is nothing but a gift from group of relatives and as per the exclusion clause 56(2)(vii) a gift from relative was not exigible to taxation. The AO accepted the contentions raised by the assessee and accordingly assessed the income of the assessee at the returned income. CIT set aside the order passed by the AO and held that the ‘HUF’ did not fall in the definition of relative in case of an ‘individual’ as provided in Explanation to clause (vii) to section 56(2) as substituted by Finance Act, 2012 with retrospective effect from 1-10-2009. That though, the definition of a relative in case of a ‘HUF’ was extended to include any member of the ‘HUF’, yet, in the said extended definition, the converse case was not included that is to say in the case of individual, the ‘HUF’ had not been mentioned in the list of relatives. The Commissioner thus formed a view that though a gift from a member thereof to the ‘HUF’ was not exigible to taxation as per the provisions of section 56(2)(vii), however, a gift by the ‘HUF’ to a member exceeding a sum of ₹ 50,000/- was taxable. Accordingly set aside the order of the AO and directed the AO to make assessment afresh. On appeal the Tribunal held that the property of the ‘HUF’ neither cannot be said to belong to a third person nor can be said to be in ‘corporate entity’, rather, the same is the property of the members of the family. It is because that the share of each of the individual member in the property or income of the ‘HUF’ is not determinate, hence, the family, as such, is treated as separate entity for taxation purposes. ‘HUF’ otherwise is not recognized as a separate juristic person distinct from the members who constitute it. A member of the ‘HUF’ has a pre-existing right in the family properties. A Coparcener has a pre-existing right and interest in the property and can demand partition also, however, the other members of the ‘HUF’ have right to be maintained out of the ‘HUF’ property. On division, the share in the estate/capital of the ‘HUF’ cannot be treated as income of the recipient, rather, the same will be a capital receipt in his hands. Accordingly the amount received by the assessee from the ‘HUF’, being its member, it is a capital receipt in his hands and is not exigible to tax. (AY. 2011-12)

Pankil Garg v. PCIT (2019) 178 ITD 282 (Chd.) (Trib.)

  1. 56 : Income from other sources – Share premium – Approved valuer report was furnished – Addition is held to be not valid. [S. 56(2)(viib), R, 11UA]

The assessee company charged premium on issue of shares. The AO treated the difference between the share premium received in excess of valuation as determined under Rule 11UA of the Act amounting to ₹ 16 x 57,477 (Shares issued to resident shareholders namely Sh. Kamal Batra, Sh. Pankaj Sudan and Sh. Pravin Jain) = ₹ 9,19,632/- was treated as income of the assessee as per the provisions of section 56(2)(viib) of the Act and added the same to the income of the assessee as income from other sources u/s. 56(2)(viib) of the Act. CIT(A) confirmed the order of the AO. On appeal the Tribunal held that, the legislative intent is to apply S. 56(2)(viib) where unaccounted money received in garb of share premium. The AO has not made out a case that stated money is not clean money. Also, the assessee has given approved valuer (CA) report justifying share premium raised based on valid and prescribed method being DCF and said report is in accordance with ICAI norms. AO has not countered the said report by substitute valuation. Also, if the shares are sold in next FY at much higher amount, the premium cannot be said to be excessive (Lalithaa Jewellery Mart Pvt Ltd v ACIT (2019))178 ITD 503 (Chennai) (Trib) followed) (ITA No. 2222/Del/2019, dt. 03.01.2020)(AY. 2014-15)

Clearview Healthcare P. Ltd. v. ITO (SMC) (Trib)(Delhi), www.itatonline.org

  1. 56 : Income from other sources – Shares at premium – Valuation of shares – FMV of shares was estimated after considering intangible assets like goodwill, know-how, patents, copyrights, trademarks, licences, franchises, etc – Re valuation of shares by the AO is held to be not justified. [S.52(viib)]

Assessee issued shares having face value of ₹ 10 per share at premium of ₹ 1,590 per share. The AO held that, share premium was much higher than value estimated under rule 11UA and therefore he determined excess amount as income of assessee u/s. 56(2)(viib) of the Act. On appeal Tribunal held that, FMV of shares was estimated after considering intangible assets like goodwill, know-how, patents, copyrights, trademarks, licences, franchises, etc. AO had not found any specific fault in valuation of shares made by assessee. When the AO has not found any defect or error in the valuation of shares by the assessee-company, it may not be necessary to apply the method of valuation prescribed under rule 11UA. Hence, revaluation of shares by the AO under rule 11UA was unjustified. (AY. 2013-14, 2015-16)

Lalithaa Jewellery Mart (P.) Ltd. v. ACIT (2019) 178 ITD 503 / 73 ITR 532 (Chennai)(Trib.)

  1. 57 : Income from other sources – Deductions – Co-Operative Housing Society – Administrative expenses are allowable against the interest on fixed deposit [S.56]

Allowing the appeal of the assessee the Tribunal held that, the interest income is to be adjusted against the expenditure incurred by the assessee during the year, accordingly the professional fees paid to its chartered Accountant is held to be allowable as deduction. Interest on deposit is not per se a separate source of income and must be taxed only after allowing administrative expenses of a society. Followed Nivedita Garden Condominium v ITO (ITA No. 120/PN. 2009 (ITA No 1390 /Pun/2019s, dt 21-01-2020 (AY. 2014 -15)

Maharashtra Police Mega City Co-Operative Society Ltd v. ITO (Pune) (Trib) (2020) CTCJ-Feb- P.122

  1. 57 : Income from other sources – Deductions – Interest paid on borrowed money – Advanced to earn interest – Though no interest is earned on money lent, interest paid is allowable as deduction.[S.56, 57(iii)]

The assessee borrowed funds and utilised them for lending money to various parties. AO disallowed the interest paid. CIT (A) confirmed the order of the AO. On appeal the Tribunal held that, interest paid by assessee on money borrowed was to be allowed under S. 57(iii) even if it did not earn interest income on money lent by it. Followed CIT v. Rajendra Prasad Moody (1978) 115 ITR 519 (SC). (AY. 2015 -16)

Akash Goyal v. ACIT (2020) 180 ITD 551 (Agra) (Trib.)

  1. 68 Cash credits – Share Application money – Identity and Creditworthiness of the share applicant – Genuineness of the transactions – Burden of Proof – Initial onus on assessee – Discharged – Onus shift to Revenue – Addition based on suspicion is held to be invalid. [S. 133 (6)]

The assessee credit the books of accounts on share capital and share premium to the tune of ₹ 2,40,00,000/-. During the assessment proceedings, the A.O. requested the assessee to provided details of identity and creditworthiness of the share applicant. Further, it requested the directors of the share applicant company to appear before him. The A.O. drew an adverse inference as the director failed to appear and the similarity on documentation filed by all parties showed the entire transaction is a sham. Further, it stated that the share applicants showed little or no tangible asset in their financial. It noted that the assessee failed to show the creditworthiness of the investors and genuineness of the transaction. He brought the entire amount as income u/s 68 of the Act. On appeal, the CIT(A) granted part relief to the assessee. On cross-appeal to the Tribunal.

The Tribunal held the duty is cast upon the assessee to explain the nature, and source of credit in books of account. The assessee has to prove 3 ingredients, i.e. identity of the share applicant, genuineness of the transaction and creditworthiness of the share applicant. To prove these ingredients, the assessee furnished the name, address, permanent account number (PAN), balance sheet and income tax return. On verification of share applicants’ financial statements, it was noticed that they had crores of rupees and the investment made was a small part of their capital. The transactions reflected in the share applicants balance sheet. The share applicants have confirmed the amount in the responses to the notice u/s. 133(6) issued by the A.O. If the assessee has discharged the initial onus, the burden shift to the A.O. to rebut by showing contra evidence. The assessee is not required to prove the source of source. If there is doubt about the creditworthiness of the investor, the A.O. should have carried out an enquired without which no adverse inference can be drawn. In the absence of investigation and gathering of evidence, the addition could not be sustained merely on suspicion or conjectures.
(AY. 2012-13)

ITO v. Paras Surti Products Pvt. Ltd. (2019) 75 ITR 137 (Kol) (Trib)

  1. 68 : Cash credits – Bank statement – Books of account – credit in bank statement not credited in books of account, no cash deposits recorded in books of account – Transactions outside books of account – Addition as cash credit is held to be not justified

Tribunal while allowing the appeal of the Assessee held that, though the assessee had maintained books of account, the cash deposits made in the bank account were not found credited in the books of account. The entire transactions were made outside the books of account. In the absence of any finding with regard to the cash deposits recorded in the books of account of the assessee, the additions made u/s. 68 in respect of cash deposits in the bank account were unsustainable. (AY. 2011-12)

Asha Sanghavi (Smt.) v. ITO (2019) 76 ITR 17 (SN) (Vishakha (Trib)

  1. 68 : Cash credits – Unsecured loan received substantiated by substantial documentary evidence – No proof by AO that loan emanated from coffers of assessee – Lenders corporate entities assessed to tax, making unsecured loans through banking channels – Complete details and evidence of lenders submitted by assessee – Addition is deleted [S.133(6)]

Unsecured loans from 15 persons had been taken during the year 2015-16. Notice under section 133(6) was issued to all the parties. Only two parties confirmed the transactions but refused to accept that they provided any unsecured loan to the assessee. Therefore, the Assessing Officer treated the loans as income under section 68. The Commissioner (Appeals) partially sustained the addition. On appeals by the assessee and Department, the Tribunal held that it is for the AO to pursue a creditor particularly once the assessee had duly furnished the complete particulars of the person from whom monies have been received by the assessee. In the absence of such a burden having been discharged, the Assessing Officer could not have mechanically proceeded to make the addition. Non-compliance with the notice issued under section 133(6) of the Income-tax Act, 1961 to all the entities giving unsecured loan cannot be a basis to make addition under section 68 of the Act. The Tribunal observed that the unsecured loans received by the assessee had been fully substantiated by substantial documentary evidence, copy of the audited financial statement, acknowledgment of return, confirmation from the lender, bank statement of the lender. Such sum could not in law or on fact be held to be unexplained cash credit under section 68 of the Act. No material had been led by the Assessing Officer to even allege that such amount emanated from the coffers of the assessee. The lenders were corporate entities duly assessed to tax and had made unsecured loans through banking channels, which fact had neither been denied nor rebutted in the assessment order, which was also duly confirmed by each of the lender. The assessee had furnished complete details and evidence to discharge the burden in respect of unsecured loan. Therefore, addition was liable to be deleted. The Tribunal followed Earthmetal Electrical (P) Ltd. v. CIT (CA No. 6181 of 2010 dated July 30, 2010) (SC) and CIT v. Orissa Corporation P. Ltd. [1986] 159 ITR 78 (SC). (AY. 2015-16)

Radius Industries v. ACIT (2019) 75 ITR 547 (Delhi)(Trib))

  1. 68 : Cash credits – Share application money – Share premium – Name, address, PAN of share applicants together with copies of their balance sheets and returns and, amount received by account payee cheques out of sufficient bank balances maintained – Addition is held to be not valid

Assessee received share capital along with share premium from various investors. The AO held that assessee failed to prove identity, genuineness and creditworthiness of share subscribers, added the amount as cash credits. CIT (A) deleted the addition. On appeal by the revenue the Tribunal held that, for proving identity of share applicants, assessee had furnished name, address, PAN of share applicants together with copies of their balance sheets and returns, with regard to creditworthiness of share applicants, applicant companies were having capital in several crores of rupees and investment made in assessee was only a small part of their capital. As regards genuineness of transactions, monies had been directly paid to assessee by account payee cheques out of sufficient bank balances maintained by share applicants. Accordingly the addition is held to be not valid. (AY. 2012-13)

ITO v. Axisline Investment Consultants (P.) Ltd. (2019) 178 ITD 402 (Kol)(Trib.)

  1. 68 : Cash credits – Share application money – Premium – Confirmation filed – Mode of investment is explained – Addition is held to be not justified.

The assessee received a certain amount from one Investor as an investment towards share capital and share premium. The AO noticed that neither DML nor assessee produced any documentary evidence that said amount was deposited DML. Hence, made additions u/s. 68 on account of bogus share capital and share premium. CIT (A) deleted the addition. Dismissing the appeal of the revenue the Tribunal held that, the investor, has proved the identity beyond doubt and that notices, summons etc. were duly served upon her at her address provided by assessee. Investors was a woman having considerable financial strength and capacity who had a substantial annual income further she had investments in many immovable properties. Investor has confirmed investment made by her in shares of assessee-company and had also explained mode of investment with substantiated reasons as well as justification for making investments in shares of assessee. Addition is held to be not valid. (AY. 2012-13, 2013-14)

DCIT v. ATC Realtors (P.) Ltd. (2019) 178 ITD 293 (Guwahati) (Trib.)

  1. 68 : Cash credits – Share transactions – Accommodation entries – Unaccounted money – denial of exemption is held to be justified [S. 10 (38), 45

Assessee filed the return declaring long-term capital gain on sale of shares as exempt under S. 10(38) of the Act. AO held that the amount received as unexplained cash credit on the ground that the assessee failed to discharge burden of proof and explain nature and source of transaction and huge profit in all shares traded by assessee against human probability. CIT (A) also affirmed the order of the AO. On appeal the Tribunal held that the assessee failed to justify manifold increase in prices of shares despite weak financials of companies. Further, investigation carried out by Department had brought facts on record that share prices had been manipulated artificially, purchased by a set of accommodation entry provider companies controlled by cartel of brokers, entry operator, etc.. Moreover, fact that prices of all shares purchased by assessee went up, that too without any corresponding profit or prospects of company, and not even in single case price of share came down, was against human probabilities and impugned year was an isolated year of such profits with no such profits made in earlier or subsequent years. Accordingly as the assessee failed to prove genuineness of transaction and long-term capital gain on sale of shares by assessee was an arranged affair to convert its own unaccounted money and thus, exemption claimed under S. 10(38) on sale of shares had rightly been disallowed. (AY. 2015-16)

Satish Kishore v. ITO (2019) 179 ITD 333 (Delhi) (Trib.)

  1. 69: Unexplained expenditure – Bogus purchases – Sales accepted – The AO is directed to restrict the addition to the extent of lower GP declared by the assessee in respect of bogus purchases as compared to G.P. on normal purchases. [S.68]

The assessee is in the business of diamonds. The AO made addition of ₹ 14, 37 867 as alleged bogus purchases. CIT(A) restricted the addition to extent of 12.5 % of such purchases. On appeal following the decision in Mohammad Haji Adam & Co. ITA No. 1004 of 2016 dt 11-02-2019 www.itatonline.org and Judgement of Mumbai Tribunal in Shri Rameshkumar Daularaj v. ITO (ITA No 4192 /Mum/ 2018 dt 07-05-2019 directed that in case of bogus purchases where sales are accepted, the addition can be made only to the extent of difference between the GP declared by the assessee on normal purchases vis a vis bogus purchases. The AO is directed to restrict the addition to the extent of lower GP declared by the assessee in respect of bogus purchases as compared to G.P. on normal purchases. (ITA No. 6483/Mum/2018, dt. 06.12.2019)(AY. 2008-09)

Hemant M. Mehta HUF v. ACIT (SMC) (Mum)(Trib), www.itatonline.org

  1. 72 : Carry forward and set off of business losses – Discontinued business – Entitle to set off the loss against business income of the current year. [S. 28(i), 71, 72(1), 176(3A)]

The assessee was engaged in the business of manufacturing of textile garments. It filed return for relevant year, declaring total income at Rs. Nil.

The AO held that as the business was discontinued the assessee was not entitle to set-off against the brought forward business losses of the earlier years. CIT (A) allowed the claim of the assessee. Tribunal affirmed the order of the CIT (A) by holding that S. 72(1)(i) does not mandate that business or profession should have been carried on by assessee during relevant previous year as a pre-condition for set off of brought forward business losses and, therefore, in case there are profits and gains of any business or profession carried on by assessee, which are assessable in its hands during relevant year, it would be entitled to set off its brought forward business losses against same. Referred CT v. Jaipuria China Clay Mines (P) Ltd (1966) 59 ITR 555 (SC) (AY. 2011-12)

DCIT v. Regency Property Investments (P.) Ltd. (2019) 179 ITD 584 (Mum) (Trib.)

  1. 73 : Losses in speculation business – Business in trading in shares – Business loss – Delivery based transactions – Derivates transactions in futures and options segment – Explanation to section 73 does not differentiate between ‘delivery based transactions’ and ‘derivative transactions in F&O segment’ and same applies to entire business of purchase and sale of shares, whether such trading is delivery based or non-delivery based and, whether there is profit or loss from such business [S.28(i)]

The assessee-company which is engaged in the business of trading in shares on its own account, derivative transactions and share broking activity. It incurred loss in respect of the business of purchase and sale of shares on its own account and the same was claimed to be a normal business loss. The AO held that the loss incurred from the said activity was liable to be treated as a deemed speculation loss in terms of Explanation below S. 73 and rejected the claim. CIT (A) up held the order of the AO. On appeal the Accountant Member accepted the claim of the assessee that the loss incurred from the business of purchase and sale of shares on its own account constituted a normal business loss. The Judicial Member did not agree with the view taken by the Accountant Member and proceeded a pass a separate order taking a different view. He held that the assessee-company during the year under consideration was engaged in a systematic business activity of purchase and sale of shares of other companies on its own account and the loss suffered in the said activity was liable to be treated as speculation loss in terms of Explanation to section 73. In view of difference of opinion between the members of the Tribunal, the matter was referred to the Third Member, Third member held that the business carried on by the assessee during the year under consideration remained the same and it was continued to be of trading in shares on its own account, derivative transactions and share broking activity as admitted by the AO himself in the assessment order. As categorically observed by the AO, there was no material difference or any deviation in the nature of business carried on by the assessee during the year under consideration, vis-a-vis the preceding year. This position gets further fortified from the gross income earned by the assessee from the different activities. The legal position that emanates from various judicial pronouncements is that the Explanation to section 73 does not differentiate between ‘delivery based transactions’ and ‘derivative transactions in F&O segment’ and same applies to the entire business of purchase and sale of shares, whether such trading is delivery based or non-delivery based, whether there is profit or loss from such business. In the present case, the assessee-company has treated the entire activity of purchase and sale of shares, which comprised of both the delivery based and non-delivery based trading as one composite business and, accordingly, claimed set off of the loss incurred in delivery based trading against profit derived from derivative trading. If the ratio of earlier judicial pronouncements is applied to the facts of the assessee’s case, it follows that the aggregation of the share trading loss and profit from derivative transaction should be done before application of Explanation to section 73 and where there was surplus profit on such aggregation, Explanation to section 73 would not be applicable. Therefore, the view taken by the Accountant Member is correct. (AY. 2009-10)

Lohia Securities Ltd. v. DCIT (2020) 180 ITD 1 (TM) (Kol) (Trib.)

  1. 80IB : Industrial undertakings – Profit derived from new oil wells – Law does not require separate accounts to be maintained as if the undertaking itself is a distinct business – Oil wells come into existence after digging the earth through rigs – usage of old plant and machinery in those undertakings no ground to disallow the claim

Held that the assessee is eligible for deduction under S. 80-IB in respect of profits derived from new oil wells, as assessee’s oil wells are distinctly identifiable as per their respective production and also that it has maintained production-wise records and drilling cost well-wise in separate books of account. Further, there is no merit in the Revenue’s argument that assessee’s each oil well ought not to be treated as a separate eligible undertaking. (AY. 2003-04 to 2006-07)

ACIT v. Oil India Ltd. (2019) 182 DTR 25 / 201 TTJ 545 (Gau)(Trib)

  1. 80IB : Industrial undertakings – Eligible undertaking – Each oil well can be treated as a separate eligible undertaking – Not required to maintain separate account for each undertaking [S. 80IC]

Dismissing the appeal of the revenue the Tribunal held that for claiming deduction under S. 80IB, law does not require such separate accounts to be maintained as if undertaking itself is a distinct business. For purpose of deduction each oil well can be treated as a separate eligible undertaking. (AY. 2003-04 to 2006-07, 2007-08)

ACIT v. Oil India Ltd. (2019) 179 ITD 455 (Guwahati) (Trib.)

  1. 80IB(11A) : Undertaking – Business of processing, preservation and packing of fruits or vegetable eligible – Business of extraction of oil from oil palm by different processes and preservation of oil under adjusted temperature and then packaging of oil in large containers or tanks, could be said to be from business of processing, preservation and packing of fruits or vegetable eligible for deduction

Allowing the appeal of the assessee the Tribunal held that, Profits from assessee’s business of extraction of oil from oil palm by different processes and preservation of oil under adjusted temperature and then packaging of oil in large containers or tanks, could be said to be from business of processing, preservation and packing of fruits or vegetable eligible for deduction. (AY. 2012-13 to 2014-15)

3F Oil Palm Agrotech (P.) Ltd. v. ACIT (2019) 178 ITD 319 (Hyd) (Trib.)

  1. 80IC : Special category States – Oil exploration activity can be taken as manufacture or production – Eligible for deduction. [S.80IB, 80IC (7)]

Dismissing the appeal of the revenue the Tribunal held that the assessee is not required to maintain its books of account qua each undertaking to be treated as separate unit in section 80IC(7) of the Act. Oil exploration activity could be taken as manufacture or production as prescribed in section 80IC(2)(b) of the Act, hence eligible for deduction. (AY. 2003-04 to 2006-07, 2007-08)

ACIT v. Oil India Ltd. (2019) 179 ITD 455 (Guwahati) (Trib.)

  1. 80JJAA : Employment of new workmen – Rendering software development services – Regarded as an industrial undertaking engaged in manufacture of article or thing – Eligible for deduction

Tribunal held that rendering software development services is regarded as an industrial undertaking engaged in manufacture of article or thing. Accordingly the software professional who were employees of assessee-company could be considered as workman, hence eligible for deduction. Followed ESI Corpn. v. Reliable Software Systems (P.) Ltd. [2012] 5 AIR Bom. R 795 (para 12] ACIT v.. Texas Instruments (India) (P.) Ltd. [2009] 27 SOT 72 (URO)(Bang) (Trib). The Tribunal held that Software Industry has also been notified as Industry for the purpose of Industrial Disputes Act, 1947 by the State of Karnataka and that the employees employed in software development industry render technical services and not services in the nature of supervisory or management character. (AY. 2012-13)

Manhattan Associates (India) Development Centre (P.) Ltd. v. DCIT (2020) 180 ITD 257 (Bang) (Trib.)

  1. 92A(2) : Transfer pricing- Arm’s length price – Associated enterprises – Two enterprises can be treated as associated enterprises – Judgements of non jurisdictional High Courts are binding on the Tribunal – Addition is deleted. [S.92C]

The law in Diageo India Pvt Ltd v. Dy CIT (2011) 47 SOT 252 (Mum) (Trib) that the definition of “Associated Enterprises” in section 92A(1)(a) & (b) is the basic rule which is unaffected by the specific instances referred to in s. 92A(2) is not good law in view of the amendment by the FA 2002 and CBDT Circular No. 8 dated 27.08.2008. The correct law as held in Veer Gems 95 taxmann.16 (Guj) is that S. 92A(2) restricts the scope of S. 92A(1) and it is only when the criterion specified in sub section (2) is satisfied, two enterprises can be treated as associated enterprises. Judgements of non jurisdictional High Courts are binding on the Tribunal. Tribunal held that the relationship between assessee and KES was not AEs and accordingly no arm’s length price adjustments could be made on the transactions between these two entities. Addition is deleted.(ITA No 2165/Mum/15, dt. 28.02.2020)(AY. 2007-08)

Kayee Pvt. Ltd. v. ITO (Mum)(Trib),www.itatonline.org

  1. 115JAA : Book profit – Deemed income – Tax credit – Demerger of SEZ units – Tribunal Order – MAT credit needs to be allowed to the assessee – not to the demerged company (SEZ units) even though the same arose on account of SEZ units.

Dismissing Revenue’s appeal, Tribunal held that even though no specific provision is provided in the Act in respect of carry forward and set off of MAT credit in respect of demerger, the credit for such MAT credit needs to be allowed to the assessee, and not to the demerged Company (SEZ units).
(AY. 2014-15)

DCIT v. TCS E-Serve International Ltd. (2019) 182 DTR 273 / 201 TTJ 997 (Mum)(Trib)

  1. 132 : Search and seizure – No search warrant – Search declared as invalid – Block assessment is also invalid [S.158BC, 158BD]

A search and seizure operation under section 132 of the Act was conducted in the business and residential premised of the assessee. In the course of the search, books of account were seized. The AO completed the assessment under s. 158BC rws 143(3) rws 158BD of the Act. CIT(A) observed that notice under s. 158BC issued is invalid and the order u/s 158BC was after limitation & cancelled the order of the AO. Tribunal held that the CIT(A) has also observed that since there is no search warrant issued in the name of the assessee in the assessment records. Therefore, once the search was to be declared as invalid and, on that ground, that impugned block assessment was also declared as invalid. Hence the order of the CIT(A) is confirmed. (BP 01-04-1989 to 08-11-1999)

Seema Sen (Dey) (Smt.) v. ACIT (2019) 177 DTR 205 (Ctk)(Trib.)

  1. 139: Return – Invalid return – Failure to enclose the report from Chartered Accountant in Form No 3CEB – AO must give an opportunity to rectify the defect with in specified time- Reassessment is quashed on the ground of change of opinion.[S.92E, 139(9), 147, 148, 271BA ITAT R. 27]

Dismissing the appeal of the revenue the Tribunal held that the AO cannot hold the return as invalid for failure to enclose the report from Chartered Accountant in form No 3CEB. AO must give an opportunity to rectify the defect with in specified time. The Tribunal entertained the Rule 27 application of the responded in respect of validity of the re assessment. Following the judgement in CIT v Kelvinator of India Ltd (2010) 320 ITR 561 (SC) the reassessment proceeding was quashed. (AY. 2008-09)

DCIT v. Husco Hydraulics (P.) Ltd. (2019) 179 ITD 559 (Pune) (Trib.)

  1. 143(2) : Assessment – Notice – Notice issued to wrong address – Department acknowledging mistake and serving notice by affixture at correct address – Service by affixture not permissible and could not be taken into account – Notice invalid and assessment is void ab initio [S.143(3), 282, 292BB]

Allowing the appeal of the assessee the Tribunal held that, the notices were never issued to the correct address. The Department itself had acknowledged its mistake by substituting service of notice by way of affixation by mentioning the correct address but this could not be taken into account as there was no effort whatsoever on the part of the Department to get the service effected through ordinary course. Notice by way of affixation was only to be served when the correct address was not available or the assessee had refused to accept the service of notice. Consequently, the assessment framed under S. 143(3) is void ab initio. (AY. 2013-14)

Tourism India Management Enterprises (P.) Ltd. v. Dy. CIT (2020)77 ITR 311/185 DTR 361 / 203 TTJ 509 (Delhi) (Trib)

  1. 143(2) : Assessment – Service of notice – Notice served on assessee which was not as per addresses as specified in rule 127(2) of 1962 Rules, assessment based on said notice is not valid assessment. [R.127(2)]

Before the CIT(A) the assessee contended that in absence of valid service of notice u/s. 143(2), assessment done u/s. 143(3) was null and void. CIT (A) allowed the partial relief on merit. The assessee filed an appeal in respect of issue of notice u/s. 143(2) of the Act. Tribunal held that, notice issued at a wrong address cannot be said to be a valid service of notice, since address which had been mentioned in notice u/s.143(2) was none of addresses as specified in rule 127(2), therefore service of notice could not be regarded as proper or valid service and, thus, consequent assessment made on basis of such invalid. (AY. 2009-2010)

ITO v. Ajay Raj (2019) 178 ITD 379 (Delhi)(Trib.)

  1. 143(3) : Assessment – Books of account – TDS return – Difference in income as per 26AS and books of accounts – No additions can be warranted [S.28(i), Form, 26AS]

Assessee received income for some contract work done for Kuvempu University. The Kuvempu university in its TDS Return has recorded higher amount as compared to that recorded by the assessee in its books of accounts. Thus, the AO has made addition based on difference in Form 26AS and books of accounts of the assessee which was also confirmed by CIT(A). On appeal the Tribunal relying on the decision of Hon’ble Mumbai ITAT in case of TUV India Pvt. Ltd. (2019) 75 ITR 364 (Mum) (Trib.) which has similar facts as that of assessee and has held that:

  • Addition to total income cannot be made due to discrepancy in receipts as shown in 26AS;

  • There is difference in accounting policy followed by assessee and clients who have deducted TDS or the TDS have been deducted by the clients on inclusive of service tax whereas the income reflected by assessee is exclusive of service tax;

  • The assessee does not have control over the data base of the Income tax Department as reflected in Form 26AS and at the best it can obtain bona fide explanations for this difference;

  • The Department has all the information in its possession and control and thus, should have conducted necessary enquiries to unravel the truth but asking the assessee to do is not warranted.

Thus, no addition can be made on the difference between the income as per Form 26AS and as that reflected in books of accounts. (AY. 2010-11)

Roopa Electricals v. ITO (2019) 57 CCH 501/ 76 ITR 39 (SMC) (SN) (Bang.)(Trib.)

  1. 145 : Method of accounting – Survey – Estimation of income on the basis of estimated gross profit on sales – Rejection of books of account without any reason – Addition is held to be not valid.[S.133A, 144]

The assessee is in the e business of dealing in precious metals and ornaments. During the course of this survey, certain diaries were found indicating unaccounted credit sales. These diaries were impounded by the authorities. On the basis of the entire material and the books of account, the assessee offered to tax additional income on account of stock difference of gold, silver and diamond on account of stock. The assessee filed return accepting this additional income. However the AO made addition on account of estimated gross profit on estimated sales. CIT (A) confirmed the addition. On appeal the Tribunal held that the AO made addition made in respect of the unaccounted sales are far in excess of the actual sales made by the assessee, when the income voluntarily offered to tax on the basis of material on record is far more than income, strictly speaking, legally justified on that basis, there cannot be any good reasons to make separate additions on the basis of the same material. In these circumstances, separate addition on account of income, as profit or as seed capital or for any other related factor, is clearly unwarranted. Accordingly deleted the addition. (AY. 2011-12)

Mayankkumar Natwarlal Soni. v. ACIT (2019) 179 ITD 444 (Ahd) (Trib.)

  1. 147: Reassessment – After the expiry of 4 years – No scrutiny assessment – Reopening solely based on information from Investigation Wing – No independent application of mind – Reassessment invalid.

The assessee filed return of income, but no scrutiny assessment was carried out. There was information obtained from the Principal Directorate of Income – Tax (Investigation Wing). The information provided that the modification of client code in the stock exchange by brokers was misused for manipulative activities, including tax evasion. On investigation by SEBI and Investigation Directorate Ahmedabad, the assessee name appeared in the list of beneficiaries. A.O. based on information held it has reasons to believe that income of the escaped assessment.

According to the Tribunal, the reassessment is invalid, as it was based on the information from the investigation wing without making independent verification and application of mind by the A.O. (ITA. No 4558/Del/2019, dated 11/09/2019, AY 2009-10)

Magan Behari Lal v. DCIT (2019)75 ITR (Trib) 322 (Delhi) (Trib)

  1. 147: Reassessment – Reasons recorded and additions made – CIT(A) deleted some additions which formed part of reasons –other additions not part of reasons survived- held no other addition could survive in respect of which reasons are not recorded [S.148]

The assessee is a government contractor and its assessment under Section 143(3) of the Act was completed by AO after making certain additions. Thereafter, reopening proceedings were initiated by issuing notice under Section 148 of the Act. After recording reasons, the AO made certain additions in the reassessment order of which some were part of reasons for reopening and some did not form part of reasons for reopening. These additions were challenged before the CIT(A) and the CIT(A) deleted those additions which were part of the reasons for reopening and confirmed the other additions. Aggrieved by the same, the assessee preferred an appeal before the Tribunal. The Tribunal relying on the various judicial precedents in case of Adhunik Niryat Ispat Ltd. (ITA No. 2090 of 2010) and Ranbaxy Laboratories Ltd v. CIT (2011) 242 CTR 117 (Delhi) (HC) held that when the additions in respect of which reasons were recorded are deleted, the additions made on account of the items other than the items in reasons recorded, cannot survive. Hence the AO was directed to delete the additions accordingly. (AY. 2009-10)

Naresh Kumar Garg, Prop. Grag Electricals v. ACIT (2019) 76 ITR 18 (SN) (Delhi)(Trib.)

  1. 147 : Reassessment – Notice – Notice was neither served upon assessee nor sent at proper address – Reassessment is held to be not valid [S.148]

Tribunal held that the assessee was regularly assessed to tax, Since the AY 2003-04, he had been regularly filing the returns up to the AY 2018-19, at Kanpur and the address mentioned was a Kanpur address. If in the Income-tax records and in the permanent account number data base, the assessee’s address and the jurisdiction of the AO had been categorically given, then without verifying the address, the ITO could not issue a notice at a wrong address. The case was reopened mentioned wrong address on which notice had been sent, which, as brought out by the assessee was not an address at all. Tribunal held that, neither the notice u/s. 148 been served upon the assessee nor had been sent at the proper address. Accordingly in absence of any valid service of notice u/s. 148 which is the condition precedent for assuming the jurisdiction for reopening the case u/s. 147, the entire proceedings were void ab initio and to be held as null and void. (AY. 2009-10)

Vikrant Tiwari v. ITO (2019)76 ITR 310 (Delhi)(Trib.)

  1. 147 : Reassessment – Sale of agricultural land – Book profit – Erroneous application of law – Mechanical application of mind – Reassessment is held to be not valid [S. 2(14(iii), 115JB, 148, 151, 263]

The assessee has sold agriculture land which has resulted into gain of ₹ 13,98,46,990/-. As per the AO, the said land being located in rural area though does not form the part of the capital asset within the meaning of Section 2(14)(iii) of the Act, at the same time, while computing book profits U/s. 115JB of the Act, gain so derived on sale of agriculture land cannot be excluded while computing the book profits. For this reason, the assessment was re-opened and notice u/s 148 was issued. As per the AO such gain is not income derived from land but is the income derived from sale of the land which cannot be termed as agriculture income which can be claimed as exempt under S.10 of the Act. Accordingly applied the provision of S.115JB in the reassessment proceedings. On appeal the CIT(A) held that gain on sale of agriculture land is eligible for exclusion from book profits U/s 115JB of the Act. However, the assessee’s ground challenging the reopening of the assessment u/s 147 was decided against the assessee and in favour of the Revenue. On appeal by the revenue and cross objection by the assessee the Tribunal held that, if the AO has incorrectly or erroneously applied law and income chargeable to tax has escaped assessment, the Revenue should resort to s. 263 and revise the assessment and not reopen u/s. 147. When matter was referred to the CIT for seeking approval, instead of holding that the matter falls u/s. 263 and not u/s 148, has given approval u/s. 151 which shows non-application of mind and mechanical grant of approval. Therefore, the assumption of jurisdiction u/s. 147 cannot be sustained and is held as invalid in eyes of law. Accordingly the cross objection is decided in favour of the assesee. (ITA No. 237/JP/2019, dt. 23.12.2019)(AY. 2013-14)

Krish Home Pvt Ltd v. ITO (Jaipur)(ITO), www.itatonline.org

  1. 147 : Reassessment – Foreign bequest – Request to transfer is pending – Bequest received by assessee at Sri Lanka could not be recognized as income – Reopening is held to be bad on law [S. 2 (24)(iia), 5,11(2), 12AA, 143(3), 148, 160(1) (iv), 161(1)]

Assessee, a charitable trust exemption u/s. 11 is allowed in the original assessment proceedings. The assessment was reopened on the grounds that assessee had received UK based bequest of certain amount which was credited to assessee’s Sri Lanka based bank account and same was entitled to be treated as income of assessee as same was neither claimed for exemption under S. 11(1) nor set apart under S. 11(2). The Assessee contended that it was not in receipt of impugned sum since due permission seeking transfer of impugned sum to India was still pending and, therefore, above sum was wrongly treated as taxable income of assessee. Allowing the appeal the Tribunal held that the amount in question was lying in treasury of bank at Sri Lanka and the Assessee’s request seeking its transfer to India was pending till date. Accordingly London based bequest transfer to Sri Lanka of assessee could not be considered as income of assessee and, therefore, impugned reopening was unjustified. (AY.2007-08)

Mahabodhi Society of India v. ITO (2019) 74 ITR(T) 485 / 179 ITD 564 (Kol) (Trib.)

  1. 148 : Reassessment – Legal representatives – Notice issued in name of deceased assessee – No subsequent notice issued on legal heirs of deceased assessee – S. is 159 not applicable – Reassessment is not valid. [S. 147, 159]

The assessee had expired on November 26, 2008 as per the death certificate dated February 11, 2009 issued by the Jaipur Municipal Corporation. The reasons for reopening the assessment for the assessment year 2006-07 under S. 147 of the Income-tax Act, 1961 were recorded on March 15, 2013. A notice under S. 148 was issued in the name of the deceased assessee on March 20, 2013. Further, there was no subsequent notice under section 148 which had been issued by the AO on the legal heirs of the deceased assessee and therefore, the provisions of S. 159 could not be invoked. Therefore, the reassessment proceedings initiated by issuance notice on the deceased assessee were to be quashed for want of jurisdiction. (AY. 2006-07)

Bhura Ram (Late) v. ITO (2019) 76 ITR 681 (Jaipur) (Trib)

  1. 151 : Reassessment – Sanction for issue of notice – Approval of commissioner in a mechanical manner without due application of mind and mentioning only “yes” – Reassessment is not sustainable [S.147, 148]

Tribunal held that, PCIT while granting approval for issue of notice u/s. 148 had only mentioned “yes”, which established that the approving authority had given approval to the reopening of the assessment in a mechanical manner without due application of mind. Therefore, reassessment was not sustainable in the eyes of law and had to be quashed. AY. 2009-10)

Blue Chip Developers P. Ltd. v. ITO (2019) 76 ITR 58 (SN.) (Delhi) (Trib)

  1. 151 : Reassessment – Sanction for issue of notice – Sanction granted by the CIT under s. 151 by simply writing “Yes, I am satisfied” is also invalid. [S.147, 148]

Held by the Tribunal that:

(i) For re-opening, the condition precedent of ‘reason to believe’ that there escapement of income is sine qua non. Re-opening merely on the basis of information given by the Addl DIT (Inv.), without application of mind / independent enquires by AO is erroneous as it does not satisfy the jurisdictional fact and law for reopening. Hence, both the reopening and reassessment order are quashed

(ii) As the CIT has simply written ‘Yes I am satisfied’ on the same day on which AO has issued reasons recorded does not clear as to whether the senior officer / sanctioning authority has applied his mind before sanctioning, the sanction granted by the CIT under s. 151 is invalid and therefore, the notice under S. 148 is bad in law and quashed. (AY 2009-10)

Vinod Commodities v. ACIT (2019) 182 DTR 49 / 200 TTJ 273 (Jod)(Trib)

  1. 153A : Assessment – Search-Addition to income on account of receipt of share application money and premium – AO not referring to any seized material or other material found during course of search – Addition is unsustainable

Search and seizure operation was conducted upon the assessee. Pursuant to the search action, notice was sent to the assessee under S. 153A of the Act, requiring the assessee to submit its return. In reply to the said notice, assessee declared a net income of
₹ 84,740 as against the returned total income of ₹ 74,831. The Assessing Officer noted that the assessee had received share application money and premium totaling to ₹ 1,11,00,000 from three companies but the required documents evidencing creditworthiness, genuineness and identity of the investors were not furnished. The assessment was completed at an income of ₹ 1,11,84,740 after making an addition of ₹ 1,11,00,000 under section 68 on account of bogus share capital. The CIT (A) deleted the addition on the ground that the additions made by the AO were beyond the scope of S. 153C because no incriminating material or evidence had been found during the course of search so as to doubt the transactions. In the entire assessment order, the Assessing Officer had not referred to any seized material or other material for the year 2009-10 having being found during the course of search in the case of the assessee. Therefore the action of the AO was based upon conjectures and surmises and the addition made was not sustainable in the eyes of law. (AY. 2009-10)

Dy. CIT v. Madhyam Housing Pvt. Ltd. (2019)76 ITR 82 (Delhi) (Trib)

  1. 159 : Legal representatives – Assessment – Assessee is not the legal heir of the deceased – Assessment is held to be bad in law [S.142(1), Hindu Succession Act, 1956, S 8, 15]

Deceased assessee i.e. Rathindranath Bhattachrya while he was alive filed return declaring certain taxable income. After his death, a notice under section 142(1) was issued to Shri A. K. Chakroborty as alleged legal heir of deceased assessee. Subsequently, assessment was made in name of Smt Sumita Bhattacahrya (Das) as legal heir. CIT (A) deleted the addition on the ground that assessment in the name of Smt Sumita Bhattacahrya (Das) as legal heir is void. On appeal by the revenue Tribunal affirmed the order of CIT (A) and held that, when the assessee is not the legal heir the assessment is void and bad in law. (AY. 2014-15)

ITO v. Rathindranath Bhattacharya. (2019) 179 ITD 349 (Kol) (Trib.)

  1. 194B : Deduction at source – Winning from lottery – Lucky draw price coupons – Gratuitous distribution without any price being paid by customers – Not lottery – Not liable to deduct tax at source.[S. 2(24) (ix), 115BB]

The assessee had made purchases of cloth from a shop. He won one Kg. of gold in lucky draw. He was issued 600 grams of gold coins and balance was deducted under S. 194B being 40 per cent of the prize money. The 1 Kg. of gold coins was valued at
₹ 4.29 lakh and total tax deducted at source including surcharge was ₹ 1.89 lakh on the impugned amount. The AO held that the tax had been rightly deducted at source by the Trust authorities. CIT (A) confirmed the order of the AO. On appeal the Tribunal held that The term ‘lottery’ is required to be construed without the aid of Explanation. The Explanation was added with effect from 1-4-2002. Explanation is neither retrospective nor merely clarificatory in this case. The term ‘lottery’ is widened to bring within the ambit also price won without any contribution for participation. In other words the Explanation, added with effect from 1-4-2002, is not applicable to this appeal which relates to assessment year 2000-2001. Accordingly the essential ingredients of ‘lottery’ as it stood prior to the insertion of Explanation to S. 2(24)(ix) is absent in the facts and circumstances of the case and the same cannot be taxed as a ‘lottery’. Hence, the order of the CIT(A) is reversed.(AY. 2000-01)

Rajmohan V. V. Kumbalappalli v. ITO (2019) 179 ITD 288 (Cochin) (Trib.)

  1. 194C : Deduction at source – Contractors – Finance Act states that it would be applicable from a particular date – Section cannot be applied retrospectively [S. 40(a)(ia), 194(6), 263]

The assessee made payment of ₹ 5,00,000/- to a transporter for which no tax was deducted as source as it was exempt from TDS. However the AO disallowed the same under section 40(a)(ia) of the Act for non deduction of TDS under section 194C(6). The CIT(A) upheld this disallowance made by the AO. On appeal to the Tribunal, the Tribunal held that the amendment in respect of section 194C(6) has been inserted by Finance Act, 2015 w.e.f. 1.6.2015 wherein TDS was applicable on transporter. There was no reason whatsoever to apply the provisions with a retrospective effect in order to make a disallowance and thereby directed to delete the addition made by AO. (AY. 2011-12)

Oruganti Sowbhagyam v. DCIT (2019) 76 ITR 79 (SN) (Cuttack) (Trib.)

  1. 194H : Deduction at source – Bank guarantee commission – No principal-agent relationship – Not liable deduct tax at source [s. 2(28A) and 194A(3)(iii)]

The A.O. held the assessee is liable to deduct tax u/s 194H on the bank guarantee commission under the new scheme by Notification No 56/2012 which came into force on 01-01-2013. The Tribunal reversed the lower authorities order, as there is no principal-agent relationship between the bank and the assessee, which is a mandatory condition for invoking the provisions of section 194H. Further, it noted that the bank guarantee commission partook the character of interest u/s 2(28A), and the exemption provided u/s 194A(3)(iii) is available to assessee qua such payment. (AY. 2012-13)

Navnirman Highway Project Pvt. Ltd. v. DCIT (2019) 75 ITR 67 (Delhi)(Trib.)

  1. 194IA : Deduction at source –Immoveable property – Purchase through power of attorney holder for Consideration of 60.12 lakh – Each co-owners share is less than ₹ 50 lakh – Not liable to deduct tax at source – Addition confirmed by the CIT (A) is deleted [S. 201(1), 201 (IA)]

Assessee Purchased an Immovable Property from Power of Attorney holder of two joint owners of said property for consideration of ₹ 60.12 Lakhs. Share of each Co-Owner was ₹ 30-06 lakhhs. Assessee deducted one per cent TDS on sale consideration paid by it. AO held that TDS should have been deducted in name of actual owners and not in name of Power of Attorney holder and since the assessee had not mentioned PAN details of joint owners, tax at source was deductible at rate of 20 Per Cent of purchase consideration accordingly created a demand under S. 201(1) along with interest under S. 201(1A) of the Act CIT (A) confirmed the addition. On appeal the Tribunal held that,even though admitted position is that assessee buyer/ transferee had not deducted tax in hands of joint owners of property, still sub-Section(2) of S. 194IA provides an exception from deducting tax of 1 Per Cent of sale consideration, when sale consideration for transfer of an immovable property is less than ₹ 50 Lakhs. Since consideration for each transferor came to ₹ 30.06 Lakhs each, which was below prescribed limit of ₹ 50 Lakhs given by statute S. 194IA is not applicable and Assessee was not required to deduct tax at source while making payment for said purchase. Accordingly the addition confirmed by the CIT (A) is deleted. (AY. 2016-17)

Oxcia Enterprises (P.) Ltd. v. DCIT (2019) 178 ITD 520 (Jodhpur) (Trib.)

  1. 194J : Deduction at source – Fees for professional or technical services – Arbitration charges – Payments to arbitrators is in nature of professional services rendered by legal professionals liable to deduct tax at source [S.40(a)(ia)]

Assessee made payments to arbitration without deducting TDS u/s. 194J. Since services of arbitrators were in the nature of court procedure for out of court settlement, TDS was not required to be deducted on the payment made to them. The AO rejected explanation of the assessee to deduct TDS and disallowed same u/s. 40(a)(ia). Tribunal by rejecting the claim of the assessee held that, since amount paid is in nature of professional services rendered by legal professionals involved in profession/occupation/vocation of arbitration, same is liable to TDS as per provisions of S. 194J. Circular No 3 of 2015 dt 12-2 2015)(2015) 371 ITR 359 (St) (AY. 2012-2013)

ACIT v. HAL Offshore Ltd. (2019) 178 ITD 272 (Delhi) (Trib.)

  1. S 199 : Deduction at source – Credit to tax deducted – Point in time – Credit in the year in which income is assessable [R. 37BA]

Assessee is engaged in the business of providing software. It raised invoice on Ashoka Leyland, Chennai in March 2011. Ashoka Leyland deposited the tax in April 2011 (succeeding financial year). The A.O. denied the credit by applying Rule 37BA(1) of the Income Tax Rules, 1962. The assessee submitted that benefits of tax deducted at source (TDS) should be allowed in the year in which the corresponding income is recorded.

The Tribunal considered rule 37BA, that grants TDS credit to a person, to whom payment is made, or credit has been given, based on information furnished by the deductor. There is no denial to the TDS by Ashok Leyland. Rule 37BA(3) provides for the “point of time” at which the benefit of TDS is granted. It equivocally provides for credit on tax deducted at source in the year in which income is assessable. Applying the rule, it allowed the TDS credit. (AY. 2011-12)

Mahesh Software Systems P. Ltd. v. ACIT (2019) 75 ITR 100/ 112 Taxmann.com 354 (Pune) (Trib)

  1. 201 : Deduction at source – Failure to deduct or pay – Non – residents – Limitation period prescribed in sub-section (3) of section 201 would be equally applicable in respect of non-residents – Order held to be in valid [s.40(a)(ia), 195, 201 (3)]

The assessee company is engaged in the business of generation, purchase, transmission and distribution of electricity. The assessee had made a remittances to certain foreign parties without deduction of any tax at source. AO treated the assessee in default and passed the order u/s 201(1) and 201(IA of the Act. CIT (A) confirmed the disallowance. The assessee challenged the order passed by the CIT(A) on the grounds viz. that, as the order passed by the ITO(IT) – TDS, Range-2, Mumbai was beyond the period specified in the proviso to section 201(3) Act therefore, the same was barred by limitation. Tribunal quashed the order on the ground that limitation period prescribed in sub-section (3) of section 201 would be equally applicable in respect of non-residents. The Tribunal also held that the revenue had not taken any action against the payee viz. Entec U.K Ltd for non deduction of tax at source and also the time limit for taking such action against them us. 148 had expired, therefore, the order against the payer assessee under S. 201(1) & 201(IA) read with section 195 dt 31-10-2013 would be in valid. Accordingly the order passed ITO (TDS is also struck down. (AY. 2007-08)

Tata Power Co. Ltd. v. ITO (IT) (2019) 179 ITD 779 (Mum) (Trib.)

  1. 201 : Deduction at source –- Failure to deduct or pay – Limitation- Increased limitation of seven years with effect from 1-04-2014 shall not apply retrospectively – Order is barred by limitation [S 201(1) 201(IA)]

Allowing the appeal of the assessee the Tribunal held that, increased limitation of seven years under section 201(3) as amended by Finance (No. 2) Act, 2014, with effect from 1-4-2014 shall not apply retrospectively to orders which has already become time barred under old time limitation of two years as set out by unamended section 201(3)(i) and, hence, no order under section 201(1)/201(1A) deeming tax deductor to be assessee-in-default can be passed if limitation has already expired as on 1-10-2014. Accordingly order is barred by limitation. (AY. 2010-11, 2011-12)

Sodexo SVC India (P.) Ltd. v. DCIT (2019) 72 ITR 132 / 178 ITD 39 (Mum) (Trib.)

  1. 206C : Collection of tax at source – Failure to collect tax at source – Limitation – No limitation is prescribed –Reasonable period of limitation of four years from end of financial year in question was to be followed – order is quashed. [S. 201(3), 206C(6A)]

During the year, the assessee sold ‘scarp’ to various parties on which tax was not collected at source as contemplated u/s. 206C(1). The AO treated the assessee as in default u/s. 206C(6A) in respect of failure to collect tax.

Tribunal held that, the limitation prescribed under one provision of the Act cannot be applied straightway to some other provisions of the Act. The legislature, in its wisdom, inserted sub-section (3) under section 201 by the Finance (No. 2) Act, 2009 w.e.f. 2001 proposing time limit for passing orders u/s. 201 with reference to tax deduction at source. However, no limitation provision has been enacted with regard to tax collection at source as provided in s. 206C and in the absence of statutory time limit prescribed for passing order with reference to collection of tax, the reasonable time limit is followed to be four years from the end of the financial year for passing the order u/s. 206C. order of the AO is quashed.(AY. 2009 -10)

Adani Enterprise Ltd. v. DCIT (2019) 178 ITD 373 (Ahd)(Trib.)

  1. 251 : Commissioner (Appeals) – Dismissal of appeal in limine – CIT(A) cannot dismiss appeal in limine for non-prosecution without deciding same on merits – Order of CIT (A) is set aside. [S. 246A, 249, 250(6), 251]

The AO passed order by making certain additions / disallowances. The assessee filed an appeal before the CIT(A). The CIT(A) dismissed the appeal by holding it non-maintainable on the grounds that the impugned assessment order was not placed on record by the assessee; and that demand notice and challan for payment of appeal fee in compliance of section 249 had not been placed on record by the assessee. On appeal the Tribunal held that, u/s. 250(6) the CIT(A) was obliged to dispose of the appeal in writing after stating the points for determination and to then pass an order on each of the points which arose for consideration. Further he obliged to state the reasons for his decision on each such point which arose for determination. Thus, the CIT(A) was duty-bound to dispose of the appeal on merits. Accordingly the Tribunal held that the assessee has e-filed documents and other attachments, as well as other information submitted by assessee at time of e-filing of appeal before CIT(A) must be treated as part of record of CIT(A) and he should pass order on merits stating points for determination, decision thereon, and reasons for decision. Followed CIT v. Premkumar Arjundas Luthra (HUF) (2016) 240 taxman 133/ 297 CTR 614 (Bom) (HC) (AY. 2015-2016)

Pawan Kumar Singhal v. ACIT (2019) 178 ITD 390 (Delhi)(Trib.)

  1. 251 : Appeal – Commissioner (Appeals) – Powers – Direction issued by the CIT(A) to initiate reassessment proceedings for assessment year 2011-12 is held to be non- est direction hence invalid [S. 50C, 147, 148,149(1)(b) 150(2))

For the assessment year the CIT (A)by order dt 3-05-2019 annulled assessment order passed by the AO and directed the jurisdictional AO to execute remedial action u/s. 50C of the Act. On appeal the Tribunal held that since in terms of S.149(1) (b) in instant case notice u/s 148 could have been issued by end of assessment year 2018-19 and thus law did not permit initiation of proceedings u/s. 147 when the order was passed and direction was issued by CIT (A). As the order was not in accordance with law and was non est direction. (AY. 2011-12)

Anshuman Ghosh v. ITO (2019) 178 ITD 311 (Luck) (Trib)

  1. 251 : Appeal – Commissioner (Appeals) – Power of enhancement Not competent to enhance assessment by taking an income which income was not considered expressly or by necessary implication by AO [S. 45, 54F, 68, 147]

The assessee disclosed capital gain on sale of a residential house property and claimed exemption u/s 54F of the Act. The AO denied the exemption on the ground that two residential properties were sold by the assessee and the deduction under section 54F is only available if property other than a residential property is sold. The Assessee made alternative claim in revised computation which was also denied. On appeal CIT (A) enhanced the assessment by making addition u/s 68 of the Act. On appeal the Tribunal held that CIT (A) has exceeded his jurisdiction in enhancing the income of the assessee by considering the new sources of income not at all considered by the AO. consequently the ground of the appeal of the assessee is allowed. (AY. 2014-15)

Hari Mohan Sharma v. ACIT (2019) 179 ITD 310 (Delhi) (Trib.)

  1. 254(2) : Appellate Tribunal – Rectification of mistake apparent from the record – Order of Tribunal affirmed by High Court – Co-ordinate bench of Tribunal, subsequent to decision of High court could not have entertained miscellaneous application of assessee and recalled order originally passed by Tribunal. [S. 260A]

Assessee is carrying out business of advertisement, marketing and publicity for certain parties from whom it received money and against said receipts, expenses were made. All receipts and expenses were shown in Profit and Loss account, however, surplus of income over expenditure was not offered to tax. CIT (A) and Tribunal held that amount received by assessee towards contribution for advertisement marketing and promotion expenditure was not tainted with mutuality, thus, income of assessee was chargeable to income tax. Assessee preferred a Miscellaneous Application before co-ordinate bench recalling original order of Tribunal claiming that income was not taxable on ground of issue of diversion of income by overriding title which had not been considered. However prior to this, in appeal preferred by assessee against order of Tribunal, High Court had upheld order of coordinate bench and Supreme Court granted leave to assessee against order of High Court. Tribunal held that when a particular issue has been decided by higher forum, then, lower forum should always refrain from deciding any aspect of that matter which can disturb finding of higher judicial forum. Accordingly coordinate bench, subsequent to decision of High court could not have entertained miscellaneous application of assessee and recalled order originally passed by Tribunal. (AY. 2001-02]

Yum! Restaurants Marketing (P.) Ltd. v. ITO (2019) 179 ITD 480 (Delhi) (Trib.)

  1. 263 : Commissioner – Revision of orders prejudicial to the revenue – Commissioner required to decide the issue before determining the assessment order as erroneous and unsustainable in law – Order of Commissioner set aside [S.143(3)]

Commissioner invoked revisionary jurisdiction under S. 263 of the Act setting aside the assessment and directed AO to make a fresh assessment as he did not make an enquiry about the AIR information received regarding cash deposits made in the bank account of the assessee. Tribunal found that Commissioner had not concluded on the issue of inadequacy of cash in hand but required the AO to do so. Tribunal held that Commissioner required to decide the aspect one way or the other before he could determine that the assessment order was erroneous. The initiation of proceedings under S. 263 of the Act were inconsistent with the requirement of S. 263(1) of the Act and therefore set aside by the Tribunal. (AY. 2009-10)

Adishwar K. Jain v. CIT (2019) 201 TTJ 77 / 52 CCH 606 / 181 DTR 29 (Mum.)(Trib.)

  1. 263 : Commissioner – Revision of orders prejudicial to revenue – Commissioner should make independent enquiries to reach a conclusion that the assessment order was erroneous and prejudicial to the interests of the revenue – In absence of independent enquiry, CIT(E) order set aside. [S. 11, 12, 28(iii), 143(3)]

Assessee a non profit organization drives technology of services market by being a strategic advisor to IT industry. Assessee though registered under section 12A did not claim exemption under section 11 of the Act but claimed part of its income as exempt on the principal of mutuality. AO denied the benefit of mutuality. CIT(E) observed that assessee had not incurred any Global Trade Development (GTD) expenses in accordance with its objects and set aside the order under section 263. Tribunal held that CIT(E) did not make any independent enquiry with respect to admissibility of GTD expenses and did not undertake the exercise of required to reach a conclusion that the assessment order was erroneous. Hence, impugned order was quashed. (AY. 2010-11)

National Association of Software and Services Companies (‘Nasscom’) v. CIT(E) (2019) 201 TTJ 39 / 56 CCH 532 / 181 DTR 73 (Delhi.)(Trib.)

  1. 263 : Commissioner – Revision of orders prejudicial to revenue – limited scrutiny – PCIT cannot look into issue which the AO himself was barred from looking into in original assessment.[S.143(1)]

The assessee purchased a property for 41,50,000 against the stamp duty value of the property being ₹ 77,19,000. The case was selected for limited scrutiny in order to verify the source of funds used for purchase of property. The assessee explained the source of funds to the tune of 41,50,000, however the AO made an addition of 3,00,000 disbelieving the receipt of gift received from brother and explaining the explanation for the balance sources of money for purchase of immovable property. The PCIT later found that the AO had not enquired into the applicability of s. 50C and issued notice under section 263 of the Act. On appeal the Tribunal held that it is beyond the power of the AO to look into any other issue when the case itself was selected for limited scrutiny. Hence the PCIT also could not look into any other issue other then the limited issue on which matter was selected for scrutiny and the order u/s. 263 could not be sustained in the eyes of law. (AY. 2014-15)

Padmavathi (Smt) v. ITO (2019) 76 ITR 55 (SN) (Chennai) (Trib.)

  1. 263 : Commissioner – Revision of orders prejudicial to revenue – Revision based on proposal from AO impermissible – Without Application of mind – Revision not erroneous or prejudicial to revenue. [S.143(3)]

Assessees filed return of income and thereafter assesses case was selected for scrutiny and assessment was completed under section 143(3) of the Act. PCIT noticed that in course of assessment proceedings, certain additions and disallowances were not examined by the AO properly hence treated order erroneous as well as prejudicial to interest of revenue and directed AO to make fresh assessment.

On Assessees appeal to Tribunal, it was noted by the Tribunal that on perusal of PCIT’s order it was clear that PCIT had exercised jurisdiction under section 263 based on proposal received from AO. It was held that PCIT was using mind of AO to revise order which was not the scheme of section 263 of the Act. PCIT ought to apply his own mind to examine whether order passed by AO is erroneous and prejudicial to interest of revenue i.e. examine assessment records and assessment order made by AO to find out error. PCIT cannot take guidance from AO to revise the assessment order which is the revisional jurisdiction vested as per scheme of the Act. It was finally concluded by Tribunal that Revisional jurisdiction exercised by PCIT was not in accordance with law hence quashed order passed by PCIT allowing Assesses appeal. (AY. 2015-16)

Manish Chirania v. PCIT (2019) 76 ITR 7 (SN) (Kol.)(Trib.)

  1. 263 : Commissioner – Revision of orders prejudicial to revenue – Limitation – Delay of more than 9 months in service of the order passed is beyond time limit allowed under the Act, hence, unsustainable – Department failed to produce evidence to show that order passed and dispatched within reasonable time – Order is held to be barred by limitation.

Tribunal held that, department had failed to produce any evidence to show that the order had been passed and dispatched to the assessee as well as the AO within reasonable time. Delay of more than 9 months in service of the order passed is beyond time limit allowed under the Act, hence, unsustainable.
(AY. 2007-08)

Chebolu Lakshmi (Smt.) v. ITO (2019) 76 ITR 4 (SN.) (Vishakha) (Trib)

  1. 263 : Commissioner – Revision of orders prejudicial to revenue – Capital gains – Profit on sale of property used for residence – Revision is held to be valid as the conditions of S. 54(2) had been violated as the assessee had not invested the capital gain in purchasing a new residential house before the due date of filing of return under S. 139(1) of the Act – Judgement of jurisdictional High Court is followed. [S.45, 54, 139(1) 139(4), 139(5)]

The assessee sold a residential flat and derived long-term capital gain of ₹ 30.08 lakhs. The assessee filed his return of income under S. 139(1) on 17-7-2014 and claimed deduction under section 54 on account of purchase of new residential flat. The AO completed assessment under S. 143(3) and accepted income returned by the assessee. PCIT in revision proceedings held that the conditions of S. 54(2) had been violated as the assessee had not invested the capital gain in purchasing a new residential house before the due date of filing of return under S. 139(1). The assessee made first payment toward purchase of flat on 5-10-2015 and next on 15-2-2016 and had not deposited the unutilized capital gain in Capital Gain Account Scheme before the due date of furnishing return under S. 139(1). Thus, the assessee was not eligible for deduction under S. 54(1) of the Act. On appeal the Tribunal held that it cannot be said that the decision of the AO is in accordance with the legal position prevailing at the relevant point of time. The decisions cited by the assessee challenging the validity of exercise of jurisdiction under S. 263, would not help the assessee in view of the specific fact involved in the instant case. Thus, on overall consideration of facts and material on record and keeping in view the ratio laid down in the catena of decisions, including the decision of the jurisdictional High Court in Humayun Suleman Merchant v. CIT (2016) 387 ITR 421 (Bom) (HC), it is to be held that PCIT has correctly exercised his power under section 263 to revise the impugned assessment order. Accordingly, the order passed under S. 263 is to be upheld by dismissing the grounds raised by the assessee. (AY. 2014-15)

Rajan Gumba Telang v. PCIT (2020) 180 ITD 184 (Mum) (Trib.)

  1. 271(1)(c) : Penalty – Notice – No specific charge and limb under which penalty proposed – Concealment of income or inaccurate particulars of income – Notice void ab intio. [Section 271(1)(c)]

It is crystal clear that charge for which penalty proposed u/s 271(1)(c), whether for concealment of income or furnishing inaccurate particular of income should be mentioned explicitly in the show-cause notice. The law mandates that authority, who is proposing to impose the penalty, shall be certain as to the basis on which penalty is levied. The notice must reflect that specific reasons, so that assessee to whom such notice is given can prepare his defense to support his case. Show-cause notice not specifying the charge and limb under which the penalty imposed is bad in law. (AY. 2014-15)

Rajendra Kumar and Co. v. DCIT (2019)75 ITR 73 (Luck) (Trib)

  1. 271(1)(c) : Penalty – Concealment – Penalty Notice bad in law – If limb under which penalty has been initiated not specified [S.274]

AO had issued notice section 271(1)(c) read with section 274 of the Act for concealment of income or furnishing inaccurate particulars of income without specifying specific limb of section 271(1)(c) of the Act. CIT(A) confirmed the penalty levied.

On Assessees appeal, Tribunal held that penalty notice issued was bad in law as it did not specify which limb i.e. whether for concealment of particulars of income or furnishing of inaccurate particulars, which was not sustainable in the eyes of law. The Tribunal after placing reliance on the decision in its own case and various other judicial pronouncements deleted the penalty levied by AO. (AY. 2005-06, 2006-07, 2008-09 to 2010-11)

Manjeet Kaur Sran (Mrs.) v. Dy. CIT (2019) 76 ITR 57 (SN) (Delhi)(Trib.)

  1. 271G : Penalty – Documents – International transaction – Transfer pricing – Unless and until a specific defect is pointed out in documents submitted, penalty cannot be levied. [S.92D(3), R.10D(i)]

Allowing the appeal of the assessee the Tribunal held that, Unless and until a specific defect is pointed out in documents submitted, penalty cannot be levied. (AY. 2012-13 to 2014-15)

Procter & Gamble Home products (P) Ltd v. Dy.CIT (2020) 180 ITD 194 (Mum) (Trib)

  1. 2(14) : Capital asset – Advance given to subsidiary – Loss – Held to be allowable as short term capital loss [S. 2(42A), 2(47)]

Dismissing the appeal of the revenue the Court held that, advance given to subsidiary which was written off is held to be allowable as short term capital loss. (Arising from ITA No. 3833/ M/21 dt. 31-03-2016) (ITA No. 1366 of 2017 dt. 26-08-2019) (AY. 2002-03)

CIT v. Siemens Nixdorf Information Systems Gmbh (2019) BCAJ- October-P. 63 (Bom) (HC)

  1. 2(14)(iii) : Capital asset – Agricultural land – Capital gains – Agricultural lands and beyond 8 k.m., from the notified cities – Revenue records showing as agricultural lands – Department to prove that the entries in the revenue records and the patta were false or bogus – Entitle to exemption. [S.45]

Dismissing the appeal of the revenue the Court held that, the agricultural land sold by the assessee is beyond 8 k.m., from the notified cities and the revenue records showing as agricultural lands. It is for the department to prove that the entries in the revenue records and the patta were false or bogus. There is a presumption to the validity of such official document and if a party states that the entry is incorrect or the document is false, the onus is on the party to prove the same. There is no allegation made by the Assessing Officer that the patta, copy of which was furnished by the Tahsildar, is a bogus patta. Even going by the Adangal extracts, which were furnished by the VAO, on being summoned under Section 131 of the Act, court observed that in column no. 19 of the Adangal extract, the land has been described as “Tharisu”. Therefore, even going by the subsequent records, the character of the land is not stated to be non agriculture. A land, which is an agricultural land, at many a times, cannot be put to use for agricultural purposes. Merely because an agriculture activity could not be carried on for various reasons including natural causes, it will not cease to be an agricultural land. Accordingly the order of the Tribunal granting exemption is affirmed. (TANO. 1408 of 2019 dt 10-07-2019) (AY. 2011-12)

PCIT v. K. P. R. Developers Ltd. (2019) 311 CTR 832/ 183 DTR 406 (Mad.)(HC)

  1. 2(22)(e) : Deemed dividend – loan to share holder – loan in the ordinary course of business – Not assessable as deemed dividend – Deemed dividend is exempt u/s 115O [S.10(34), 115O, Art. 226]

Allowing the petition the Court held that in the application before the Settlement Commission, the assessee had specifically stated that Rasi Seeds Pvt. Ltd. had advanced money to Rasi Tex Pvt. Ltd. in the ordinary course of business. The money so received was utilised for its working capital requirements and no part of it was diverted as loan or advance for direct or indirect benefit of any of the directors, including the assessee. It was further stated therein that these funds were given as inter corporate loans on which interest was charged at market rates. The interest charged by Rasi Seeds Pvt. Ltd. have been assessed as business income by the same Assessing Officer, who was also the Assessing Officer of the assessee. The only finding by the Settlement Commission in this regard was that the lending of money did not form a substantial part of the business of Rasi Seeds Pvt. Ltd. When the facts which were specifically referred to in the application and contended before the Settlement Commission had not been disputed, it could not be said that the assessee had failed to explain before the Commission that the transactions were during the ordinary course of business. The dividend was not taxable as per the provisions of section 10(34) of the Act and the contrary findings in the order of the Settlement Commission were violative of the statutory provisions and therefore illegal. It was not in dispute that during the assessment years 2012-13 and 2013-14, there were more than one shareholder holding substantial interests in Rasi Seeds Pvt. Ltd. and Rasi Tex Pvt. Ltd. The Settlement Commission was also apprised of this fact that there were two shareholders having substantial interests in Rasi Tex Pvt. Ltd. The loan from Rasi Seeds Pvt. Ltd. was not made directly to the specific shareholder and as more than one shareholder was to be treated as specified shareholder for the purposes of section 2(22)(e) for the loan from Rasi Seeds Pvt. Ltd. to Rasi Tex Pvt. Ltd. the section could not be applied for the relevant assessment years for the reason that the computation of the section failed since the section did not provide for making the amount of loan to be added in the hands of more than one shareholder or dividing the amount of loan between specified shareholders in any ratio. Since the computation of the section itself failed, it necessarily would follow that the charge of the section for the assessment years 2012-13 and 2013-14 would also fail. The ground of absence of incriminating material in relation to deemed dividend, was placed before the Settlement Commission but not considered. The order of the Settlement Commission was not in accordance with the provisions of the Act and therefore, it was liable to be quashed. (AYs 2007-08 to 2013-14)

R. Chitra v. ITSC Vice Chairman (2019) 418 ITR 530 (Mad) (HC)

  1. 2(35) : Principal officer – Notice must mention some connection with the management or administration of the company – Merely on surmises and conjectures, no person shall be treated as a Principal officer
    [Art. 226]

The assessee is treated as a Principal Officer of the Company Kingfisher Airlines Ltd. for the financial years 2009-10 to 2012-13 u/s. 2(35) of the Act. The said notice is challenged mainly on the ground that the objections submitted to the notice issued had not duly considered. Allowing the petition the Court held that, notice must mention some connection with the management or administration of the company. Merely on surmises and conjectures, no person shall be treated as a Principal officer. Accordingly the notice is quashed. (WP No. 34252 of 2018 dt. 17-10-2019)

A. Harish Bhat v. ACIT (2019) CTCJ-December-P. 170 (Karn)(HC)

  1. 2(42A) : Short-term capital asset – Assignment of loan – Loss arising out of assignment of loan is allowable as short term capital loss. [S. 2(14), 2(42B), 28 (i)]

Dismissing the appeal of the revenue the Court held that Loss arising out of assignment of loan is allowable as short term capital loss. Followed Siemens Nixdorf Informations Systems GmbH v. Dy. DIT(IT) (2016) 158 ITD 480 (Mum) (Trib.) affirmed in Dy. DIT v. Siemens Nixdorf Informations Systems GmbH ITA No. 1366 of 2017 dt 26-08-2019)(ITA No. 623 of 2017 dt 26-08-2019) (AY. 2007-08)

PCIT v. Reliance Natural Resources Ltd (2019) 267 Taxman 644 (Bom) (HC)

  1. 4 : Charge of income-tax – Capital or revenue – Business of accepting deposits from members and lending the same to non members – Waiver of deposit – Waiver of principal component of deposits and debentures – Capital receipts [S.28(i)]

The assessee is carrying on the business of accepting deposits from members and lending the same to non members. The assessee treated the waiver of principal component of deposits and debentures as capital receipts. The AO treated the same as revenue receipts. Tribunal confirmed the order of the AO. On appeal high Court held that waiver of principal component of deposits and debentures constituted capital receipt. Followed ITA No 99 of 2009. (AYs 2007-08, 2008-09)

Manipal Sowbhagya Nidhi Ltd. v. Dy. CIT (2019) 112 Taxman.com 325 / (2020) 268 Taxman 330 (Karn.) (HC)

Editorial: SLP of revenue is dismissed Dy CIT v. Manipal Sowbhagya Nidhi Ltd (2020) 268 Taxman 329 (SC)

  1. 5 : Scope of total income – Accrual – Year of taxability – Income accrues only when it becomes due – When the other party accepts the liability to pay the amount [S. 4, 145]

The assessee is in the business of promoter and developer of land. It sold the land under a memorandum of understanding (MOU) for a consideration of 120 crore. The assessee offered only ₹ 100 crore for tax in the year 2012-13 as the MOU provided that a sum of ₹ 20 Crore would be paid by the purchaser on execution of sale deed after getting plan sanctioned and on inclusion of the name of the purchaser in the 7/12 extract. However the AO taxed entire sum of ₹ 120 crore in the assessment year 2012-13 only. On appeal CIT(A) also confirmed the order of the AO. On further appeal the Tribunal deleted the addition following the ratio in Morvi Industries Ltd v. CIT (1971) 82 ITR 835 (SC). On appeal by the revenue dismissing the appeal of the Court held that, the income accrues only when it becomes due when the other party accepts the liability to pay. Followed CIT v Shoorji Vallabdas & Co (1962) 46 ITR 144 (SC), the Court also referred CIT v. Nagri Mills Co. Ltd. (1958) 33 ITR 681 (Bom) (HC) wherein the High Court held that when the tax rate is the same the department should not fritter away the energies in fighting matters. (ITA No 306/Pun/ 2015 dt. 09-02-2017) (AY. 2012-13) (ITA No 1345 of 2017 dt. 18-11-2019)

PCIT v. Rohan Projects (2020) BCAJ-January- P.46 (Bom) (HC)

  1. 10(24) : Association of trade unions – Amount received on settlement of dispute between company and its workers – Amount disbursed to workers – Amount not assessable in hands of trade union

Allowing the appeal of the assessee the Tribunal held, that once the factum of settlement was not disputed coupled with the factum of receipt of a particular amount from the company, and the amount had been distributed amongst the employees, the case would squarely stand covered under S. 10(24) of the Act. Though the contribution from the employer was received as per the settlement agreement, it was only incidental to the activities of the services of the assessee in resolving the dispute between the member workers and the employer with the intention of advancement of welfare of the members. The amount was not assessable as income of the assessee. (AY. 2009-10)

Gujarat Rajya Kamdar Sabha Union Machiwadi v. ITO (2020) 421 ITR 341 / 312 CTR 313 (Guj) (HC)

  1. 10B : Export oriented undertakings – Total turnover- Foreign currency expenditure incurred for providing software development services outside India cannot be excluded from export turnover for purpose of computing deduction- When expenditure incurred in foreign currency on account of telecommunication expenses is excluded from export turnover, said expenditure has to be excluded from total turnover also for purpose of computation of deduction [S. 80HHC, 80HHE]

Dismissing the appeal of the revenue the High Court held that foreign currency expenditure incurred for providing software development services outside India cannot be excluded from export turnover for purpose of computing deduction. High Court also held that when expenditure incurred in foreign currency on account of telecommunication expenses is excluded from export turnover, said expenditure has to be excluded from total turnover also for purpose of computation of deduction. Followed CIT v. Tata Elxsi Ltd (2012) 349 ITR 98 (Karn) (HC), affirmed in CIT v HCL Technologies Ltd. (2018) 404 ITR 719 (SC) (AY. 2003-04, 2004-05)

CIT v. Mphasis Ltd (2016) 74 taxmann.com 274 (Karn) (HC)

Editorial : SLP of revenue is dismissed; CIT v. Mphasis Ltd. (2020) 269 Taxman 3 (SC)

  1. 11 : Property held for charitable purposes-Company set up for prevention of pollution- Preservation of environment is an object of general public utility- Entitle to exemption. [S. 2(15), 12A, Companies Act, S.25]

Dismissing the appeal of the revenue the Court held that Company set up for prevention of pollution is preservation of environment is an object of general public utility hence entitle to exemption. (AY. 2009-10)

CIT v. Naroda Enviro Projects Ltd. (2019)419 ITR 482 (Guj)(HC)

  1. 11 : Property held for charitable purposes – Accumulation of income- Form No 10 was filed belatedly – Rejection of claim on technical formalities is held to be not valid- AO is directed to decide the allowability of claim on merits [S.11(2), 139(9), 143(1) 154]

Assessee filed its return which was processed under S. 143(1) of the Act. Subsequently, assessee filed application under S. 154 contending that by mistake it had not filed Form No. 10 along with extract of Board Resolution for accumulation of funds for purpose of construction of a temple at a particular property as envisaged under S. 11(2) which in turn permitted assessee to not include said income for taxation purposes. AO rejected assessee’s application holding that return filed by assessee was not accompanied with Form No. 10 and Board Resolution, and even if Board Resolution with Form No. 10 had been enclosed with return, such filing would have been beyond time under section 139(9) and, thus, assessee could not be allowed for accumulation of income under S. 11(2) of the Act. Tribunal upheld order of the AO. On appeal High Court held that when assessee was entitled to a statutory benefit, it was incumbent upon concerned authority to examine admissibility of benefit than to foreclose assessee on technicalities. Therefore, order was to be set aside and, matter was to be remanded back to AO. to take note of Form No. 10 accompanied by Board Resolution and, thereupon, take a decision on merits. Accordingly the matter was remanded.
(AY. 2008-09)

Chandraprabhuji Maharaj Jain Juna Mandir Trust v. DCIT (2019) 266 Taxman 399 (Mad) (HC)

  1. 12A : Registration –Trust or institution – 71% of the receipt were spent in accordance with the object of the Trust – Partial expenditure were spent on religious – Trust is held to be genuine – Entitle for registration – Benefit of S.11 is not available only to the extent of partial expenditure which were spent on religious [S.11]

Dismissing the appeal of the revenue the Court held that at stage of registration, question of application of income of trust is premature. DIT(E) rejected petitioner’s application for registration under S. 12A on ground that 29 per cent of its gross receipts were expended on making donations for religious purposes which was not in accordance with objects of trust. Court held that 71 per cent of receipt of trust were being spent in accordance with its object, it was established that trust was genuine. Court also held that spending a partial expenditure which was not authorized by trust would not make trust non-genuine and only consequences would be that benefit of S. 11 would not be available to that extent.

CIT v. Manekji Mota Charitable Trust. (2019) 267 Taxman 16 (Bom)(HC)

  1. 14A : Disallowance of expenditure – Exempt income – Disallowance cannot exceed exempt income earned – Tribunal restricting disallowance to extent offered by assessee is held to be proper [R.8D]

Dismissing the appeal of the revenue the Court held that the disallowance of expenditure incurred to earn the exempt income could not exceed the exempt income earned. The ratio of the decisions in the cases of Cheminvest Ltd. v. CIT(2015) 378 ITR 33 (Delhi) (HC)) and CIT v. Holcim India (P) Ltd. (I.T.A. No. 486 of 2014 decided on September 5, 2014 (Delhi) (HC)) would include a facet where the assessee’s exempt income was not nil, but had earned exempt income which was more than the expenditure incurred by the assessee in order to earn such income. The order of the Tribunal which restricted the disallowance of the expenditure to the extent voluntarily offered by the assessee was not erroneous. (AY. 2009-10)

CIT v. HSBC Invest Direct (India) Ltd. (2020) 421 ITR 125 (Bom) (HC)

  1. 14A : Disallowance of expenditure – Exempt income – When there is no exempt income declared during the year no disallowance can be made. [R.8D(2) (ii)]

Dismissing the appeal of the revenue the Court held that, when there is no exempt income declared during the year no disallowance can be made. Followed Cheminvest Ltd. v. CIT (2015) 378 ITR 33 (Delhi) (HC)CIT v. Shivam Motors Pvt. Ltd. (2015) 230 Taxman 63 / 272 CTR 277 (All) (HC), PCIT v. Man Infraprojects Ltd. ITA No dt 9-04 2019. (ITA No. 5241 / 2013 dt 18-10 2016) (ITA No. 1124 of 2017 dt. 27-01-2020) (AY. 2008-09)

Editorial: Also refer, PCIT v. Ballapur Industries Ltd (ITA No. 51 of 2016, dt. 13.10.2016) (Bom.) (HC), www.itatonline.org, PCIT v. Oil Industries Development Board (2019) 262 Taxman 102 (SC), www.itatonline.org, Cheminvest Ltd v. ITO (2009) 27 DTR 82 /124 TTJ 577 / 121 TTD 318 (SB) (Delhi) (Trib.)

PCIT v. Khoinoor Project Pvt. Ltd. (Bom) (HC) (UR)

  1. 28(i) : Income from business – Income from house property – Exploitation of property commercially by way of complex commercial activities – Rental income is to be taxable as income from business – Not as Income from House Property [S.22]

Assessee declared its income under the head Income from Business. The AO however, treated the same as Income from House Property which was affirmed by the CIT (A). Tribunal decided the issue in favour of the assessee. On appeal before the High Court, question raised is “Whether, on the facts and in the circumstance of the case and in law, the Hon’ble Tribunal was justified in holding that the assessee had exploited its property commercially by way of complex commercial activities and hence, the rental income received by the assessee to be taxable as income from business and not under the head “Income from House Property ?” The Honourable Court considered the object clause of the company and various services provided such as marketing and promotional activities and also organising various events and programs. Court also noted in the context of the revenue sharing agreement copies of which have been placed on record on which the revenue receives not only license fee of the amounts specified therein and percentage of net revenue. In some of the agreements the compensation is either license fee or percentage of net revenue, whichever is higher. The Intention of the Assessee is also a material circumstance and the objects of Association, the kind of services rendered clearly point out that the Income is from Business. All the factors cumulatively taken demonstrate that the assessee had intended to enter into a Business of renting out commercial space to interested parties. The other income is only an income which is a dividend income from the deposits received from the Business income. Therefore, considering all these factors which have been enumerated above and referred to by the Tribunal, the findings rendered by the Tribunal on assessment of the factual position before it that the income in question has to be treated as business Income. Referred Chennai Properties and Investments Ltd. v. CIT [2015] 373 ITR 673 (SC) Raj Dadarkar, Associates v. ACIT[2017] 394 ITR 592 /81 taxmann.com 193 (SC) PCIT v. Krome Planet Interiors (P.) Ltd [2019] 107 taxmann.com 443 / 265 Taxman 308 (Bom) (HC). (ITA No. 1783/Mum/ 2015 dt. 23-09-2016 (ITA No. 1583 of 2017 dt 13-01-2020) (AY.2010-11)

PCIT v. City Centre Mall Nashik Pvt. Ltd (Bom) (HC) (UR)

  1. 28(i) : Business loss – Business expenditure – Obsolescence allowance – Write of off obsolete stock – Allowable as business loss [S. 37(1) 145A]

Dismissing the appeal of the revenue the Court held that the obsolete stock which was not disposed of or sold was allowable as expenditure. Order of Tribunal is affirmed.

CIT v. Gigabyte Technology (India) Ltd. (2020) 421 ITR 21 (Bom) (HC)

  1. 32 : Depreciation – Residential flats – Accommodation of employees – Entitle for higher rate of depreciation

Dismissing the appeal of the revenue the Court held that, residential flats built by assessee-company for accommodation of its employees was to be regarded as building used for purpose of business of company and thus, assessee was entitled to claim high rate of depreciation on said flats. i.e. @ 10 %. (AY. 2000-01)

CIT v. Ashok Leyland Ltd. (2019) 266 Taxman 406 (Mad) (HC)

  1. 37(1): Business expenditure – Cheque issued – Realised in next assessment year – Cheque is not dishonoured but encashed, payment relates back to date of tendering of cheque and date of payment would be date of delivery of cheque – Allowable as deduction during previous year

Assessee paid municipal tax for which cheques were issued to local authority prior to end of previous year relevant to assessment year, however, bank statements showed realization only on commencement of next assessment year, deduction in respect of such municipal tax was to be allowed during previous year. When a cheque is not dishonoured but encashed, payment relates back to date of tendering of cheque and date of payment would be date of delivery of cheque. Followed CIT v Ogale Glass Works Ltd. (1954) 25 ITR 529 (SC) (Arising from Punalur Paper Mills Ltd. v. ITO (2009) 29 SOT 449 (Cochin) (Trib) (ITA Nos. 1378 to 1423 of 2019 dt. 7-2-2019) (AY. 1996-97 to 2002-03 2004-05)

CIT v. Punalur Paper Mills Ltd. (2020) 268 Taxman 47 (Ker) (HC)

  1. 37(1) : Business expenditure – Business loss – Write off of losses towards stock obsolescence in respect of Laptops and motherboards – Held to be allowable as revenue expenditure [S. 28(i), 145A]

Dismissing the appeal of the revenue the Court held that the Tribunal is justified in holding that write off of losses towards stock obsolescence in respect of Laptops and motherboards is held to be allowable as revenue expenditure. Followed CIT v Heredilla Chemicals Ltd (2002) 255 ITR 532 (Bom) (HC) (ITA No. 28 of 2014 dt 7-1-2020)

CIT v. Gigabyte Technology (India) Ltd (Bom) (HC) (UR)

  1. 37(1) : Business expenditure –Capital or revenue – Non-compete fee – Agreement was only for 18 months – Allowable as revenue expenditure

Assessee is engaged in business as Registrar and Transfer Agent licensed by SEBI. It entered into a non-compete agreement and the tenor of agreement was only 18 months. AO treated the payment as capital in nature. Tribunal allowed the claim as revenue in nature. On appeal by the revenue the Court held that it could not be stated that assessee derived any enduring benefit due to payment effected by it to said person for obtaining certain commitments and restricting himself from indulging in any competition with business of assessee or from weaving away employees. therefore, non compete fee had to be treated as a revenue expenditure. Followed Asianet Communications Ltd. v. CIT 2018) 407 ITR 706 (Mad) (HC)
(AY. 2014-15)

CIT v. Computer Age Management Services (P.) Ltd. (2019) 267 taxman 146 (Mad) (HC)

  1. 37(1) : Business expenditure – Construction business – Expenditure incurred subsequent to sale of building – Held to be allowable as revenue expenditure. [S. 145]

Dismissing the appeal of the revenue the Court held that assessee which is engaged in the business of construction and sale of residential and commercial building complexes expenditure for completing its construction during financial year subsequent to sale of building, such expenditure was liable for deduction. Court held that in order to claim deduction of business expenditure, it is not necessary that amount has been actually paid or expended during relevant accounting year itself and it is sufficient that liability for payment had incurred or accrued during relevant accounting year and actual payment of amount or discharge of liability may occur in future. (AY. 2009-10)

CIT v. Oberon Edifices & Estates (P.) Ltd. (2019) 267 taxman 118 (Ker) (HC)

  1. 37(1) : Business expenditure – Capital or revenue – Insurance premium on purchase of new car – Held to be revenue expenditure

Dismissing the appeal of the revenue the Court held that the insurance premium paid by the assessee towards purchase of the new car was revenue in nature, and should be allowed in the year in which it was incurred. (AY. 2011-12)

PCIT v. Shah Virchand Govanji Jewellers Pvt. Ltd (2019] 418 ITR 472 (Guj) (HC)

  1. 37(1) : Business expenditure –Social responsibility – Agreement with State Government to construct houses for poor people affected by floods – Held to be allowable on commercial expediency

Allowing the appeal of the assessee the Court held that the assessee was carrying on the business of iron ore and also trading in iron ore. Thus, day in and day out the assessee would be approaching the appropriate Government and its authorities for grant of permits, licences and as such the assessee in its wisdom and as a prudent business decision had entered into a memorandum of understanding with the Government of Karnataka and incurred the expenditure towards construction of houses for the needy persons, not only as a social responsibility but also keeping in mind the goodwill and benefit it would yield in the long run in earning profit which was the ultimate object of conducting business and as such, expenditure incurred by the assessee would be in the realm of business expenditure. The amounts were deductible. (AY. 2011-12, 2012-2013)

Kanhaiyalal Dudheria v. JCIT (2019) 418 ITR 410 / 310 CTR 617 / 182 DTR 57 (Karn) (HC)

  1. 40(a)(ia) : Amounts not deductible – Deduction at source – Interest paid to resident – Second proviso to S. 40(a)(ia) is applicable – No disallowance can be made

High Court dismissed the appeal of the revenue by holding that second proviso to S. 40(a)(ia) is applicable to relevant assessment year. Followed Ansal Land Mark Township (P) Ltd. v. CIT (2015) 377 ITR 635 (Delhi) (HC). (AY. 2010-11)

PCIT v. Noida Software Technology Park Ltd. (2020)113 taxmann.com 144/ 269 Taxman 11 (Delhi) (HC)

Editorial: SLP of revenue is admitted, PCIT v. Noida Software Technology Park Ltd. (2020) 269 Taxman 10 (SC)

  1. 40(a)(ia) : Amounts not deductible – Deduction at source – Payee reflected the said amount as it tax liability – No disallowance can be made

AO made disallowance in respect of certain payments made by assessee on which tax had not been deducted at source. Tribunal deleted said disallowance on ground that payee had reflected said amount as its tax liability in its return. High Court affirmed the order of the Tribunal. Followed CIT v. Rajinder Kumar (2014) 362 ITR 241 (Delhi) (HC), CIT v. Ansal Land Mark Township Pvt. Ltd. (2015) 377 ITR 635 (Delhi) (HC).

PCIT v. Shivaai Industries (P.) Ltd. (2020) 269 Taxman 54 (Delhi) (HC)

Editorial : SLP is granted to the revenue; PCIT v. Shivaai Industries (P.) Ltd. (2020) 269 Taxman 53 (SC)

  1. 40(a)(ia) : Amounts not deductible – Deduction at source – Second proviso to S. 40(a)(ia) of the Act inserted by Finance Act, 2012 is clarificatory and retrospective in nature – No disallowance can be made where the recipient of the amount has already discharged his tax liability therein [S. 40(a), 139(1)]

The Question before the High Court was “Whether the second proviso to S. 40(a)(ia) of the Act inserted by Finance Act, 2012 is clarificatory and retrospective in nature and disallowance under S. 40(a)(ia) of the Act by the Tribunal is justifiable where the recipient of the amount has already discharged his tax liability therein?” High court answered the question in favour of assessee and against the revenue. followed flowing case laws. CIT v. Ansal Land Mark Township P. Ltd. (2015) 377 ITR 635 (Delhi) (HC) CIT v. Calcutta Export Company (2018 404 ITR 654 (SC) PCIT v. Manoj Kumar Singh; [2018] 402 ITR 238 (All) (HC), PCIT v Perfect Circle India Pvt. Ltd (Bom) (HC). (ITA No 707 2016 dt 07-01-2019s) PCIT v. Shivpal Singh Chaudhary [2018] 409 ITR 87 (P&H) (HC) Deeva Devi (Smt) v. PCIT (Karn) (HC) (WP No. 3928 /2018 dt. 20-02-2018). Distinguished Thomas George Muthoot v. CIT. (2015)235 Taxman 246/ (2016) 287 CTR 101 (Ker) (HC) (Approved Rajeev Kumar Agarwal v. Add.CIT (2014) 34 ITR 479 (Agra) (Trib))

CIT v. Anand, S. M. (2019) 311 CTR 795 (Karn)(HC)

  1. 45: Capital gains – Surrender of tenancy rights – Assessable as capital gains and not as income from other sources – Invested in capital bonds is eligible for exemption u/s 54EC of the Act [S.48, 54EC, 56]

The assessee is an HUF on surrender of tenancy rights received compensation of ₹ 50 lakh which was invested in capital bonds and claimed exemption u/s. 54EC of the Act. The AO treated the amount received on surrender of tenancy rights as income from other sources and denied the exemption u/s. 54EC of the Act. Order of the AO is affirmed by the Tribunal. On appeal by the assessee allowing the appeal of the High Court held that the assessee had disclosed the amount of ₹ 50 lakh received from M/s. Carlton Coats Pvt. Ltd. for settlement of its claim to the property and had further disclosed that the said amount was invested in capital bonds. Thus the said amount was received by the assessee as long term capital gains in view of surrender of rights by the assessee vis-a-vis the property in question. In the circumstances, merely on the basis of suspicion, the revenue authorities ought not to have rejected the claim of the assessee that the said amount was received as long term capital gains but to treat the said amount as income from other sources. (ITA No. 4511/Mum/2016 dt 24-08-2016, (AY. 2009- 10).) ITA No 1219 of 2017 dt 27-01-2020

Amol C. Shah (HUF) v. ITO (Bom) (HC) (UR)

  1. 45 : Capital gains – Family arrangements – If there is no pre-existing right, the family arrangement constitutes a transfer – Merely because dispute involved some family members and such dispute is ultimately settled by filing consent terms, the same cannot be styled as a family arrangement or family settlement so as to hold that the consideration received as a result of such settlement, does not constitute capital gain – Reassessment is also held to be valid [Ss.147, 148, 149, 151]

Dismissing the appeal of the assessee the Court held that a family settlement which is a settlement amongst family members in the context of their ‘pre-existing right’ is not a “transfer”. Such a settlement only defines a pre-existing joint interest as a separate interest. However, if there is no pre-existing right, the family arrangement constitutes a “transfer”. Merely because dispute involved some family members and such dispute is ultimately settled by filing consent terms, the same cannot be styled as a family arrangement or family settlement so as to hold that the consideration received as a result of such settlement, does not constitute capital gain. Referred Maturi Pullaiah v. Maturi Narasinham, AIR 1966 SC 1836. Court also upheld the reassessment proceedings. (AY. 1999-2000) (ITA 2012 dt. 8-11-2019)

P. P. Mahatme, Power of Attorney, Lorna Margaret Pinto v. ITO (2020) 420 ITR 71/ 226 Taxman 186 (Bom) (HC) www.itatonline. org

  1. 54 : Capital gains – Profit on sale of property used for residence – Additional cost of construction incurred within stipulated time though not deposited in capital gains account – Entitled to deduction [Ss. 45, 54F, 264, Art. 226]

Allowing the petition the Court held that the assessee had claimed that it had utilised the disputed sum towards the cost of the additional construction within the period of three years from the date of the transfer and therefore, if such contention were factually correct, the assessee had to be held to have satisfied the mandatory requirement under S. 54(1) to get the deduction. Matter remanded to verify whether the sum was utilised by the assessee within the time stipulated under S. 54(1) for the purpose of construction. If such utilisation was found to have been made within such time, the Department was bound to grant deduction.

Venkata Dilip Kumar v. CIT (2019)419 ITR 298 (Mad) (HC)

  1. 54F : Capital gains – Investment in a residential house – The assessee is entitled to the withdrawal of the amount deposited under Sub-Section (4) of Section 54F of the Act under the capital gain account subject to deduction of tax applicable to the case on hand [S.45, 54F(4)]

The petitioner had sold two properties. From the sale consideration amount, ₹ 1,15,00,000/- was deposited by the petitioner in the Capital Gain Account Scheme, 1988. The return of income for the Assessment year 2013-14 was filed on 14-7-2013 and exemption was claimed under S. 54F of the Act. In the meantime, the petitioner had purchased a flat for ₹ 21,32,470/- (including stamp duty and registration) on
20-08-2013 before the expiry of three years from the date of the transfer of the capital asset. The revenue issued the notice impugned, to bring the unutilized capital gain to tax as per S. 54 F(4) of the Act. In other words, the unutilized amount (₹ 1,15,00,000 – ₹ 21,32,470 deducting exemption) after the expiry of three years from the date of transfer of the original capital is proposed to be subjected to tax under Section 45 of the Act. On writ the the petitioner argued that the scope of Section 54F(4) of the Act and the proviso thereof is not properly appreciated by the respondent. The petitioner had deposited the sale consideration received on transfer of certain capital assets in the capital gain account scheme with the bankers and utilized ₹ 21,32,470/- out of ₹ 1,15,00,000/- capital gain amount deposited which squarely falls under the proviso to section 54F(4) of the Act. High Court held that the respondent failed to interpret the phrase ‘wholly or partly’ enumerated in the proviso in a right perspective. According to the petitioner, the amount deposited under Section 54F (4) of the Act if utilized partly for the purchase or construction of the new asset within three years, then the unutilized amount shall not be liable to tax under Section 45 of the Act. it is clear that the proviso appended to Section 58[4][f] has to be read as a whole along with the Clauses [a] and [b] therein which would explain the real intendment of the phrase “not utilized wholly or partly”. In the context, the proviso to Section 54 F[4] becomes an integral part of the enactment acquiring the tenor and colour of the main provision. To make the provision workable, the arguments of the petitioner that the Clauses [a] and [b] of the proviso need not be addressed to, cannot be countenanced for the reasons aforesaid. Thus, it can be held that on reading of the provision as a whole along with Clauses [a] and [b] to the proviso, the intention of the Legislature would be gathered that the unutilized capital gain amount under Section 54 F[4] has to be charged under Section 45 as income of the previous year, after the expiry of three years from the date of sale of the capital asset which in the present case is the assessment year 2016-17 In the circumstances, the assessee is entitled to the withdrawal of the amount deposited under Sub-Section (4) of Section 54F of the Act under the capital gain account subject to deduction of tax applicable to the case on hand. (AY. 2016-17)

P. N. Shetty v. ITO (2019) 181 DTR 97/ 310 CTR 359/ 266 Taxman 15 (Karn) (HC)

  1. 68 : Cash credits – The expression “any previous year” does not mean all previous years but the previous year in relation to the assessment year concerned – If the cash credits are credited in the FY 2006-07, it cannot be brought to tax in a later AY. 2009-10 [S.3]

The question before the High Court was “On the facts and in the circumstances of the case and in law, whether the Tribunal was right in sustaining the additions made of old outstanding sundry credit balances” Allowing the appeal of the assessee the Court held that, the expression “any previous year” does not mean all previous years but the previous year in relation to the assessment year concerned. If the cash credits are credited in the FY 2006-07, it cannot be brought to tax in a later AY. 2009-10. Followed CIT v. Bhaichand H. Gandhi (1983), 141 ITR 67 (Bom) (HC) CIT v. Lakshman Swaroop Gupta & Brothers (1975), 100 ITR 222 (Raj) (HC) Bhor Industries Ltd v. CIT AIR 1961 SC 1100 (ITA No. 29 of 013, dt. 14-02-2020) (AY. 2009-10)

Ivan Singh v. ACIT (Bom)(HC)(Goa Bench), www.itatonline.org

  1. 68 : Cash credits – Share capital – Substantial part of share application money was received in earlier assessment years – Balance amount sufficient evidence was produced such as identity and genuineness – Deletion of addition is held to be valid

Dismissing the appeal of the revenue, the Court held that, substantial part of share application money was received in earlier assessment year accordingly the amount could not be added in impugned assessment year Balance amount sufficient evidence was produced such as identity and genuineness. Order of Tribunal is affirmed. (Arising from ITA No. 4836/Mum/ 2011 dt 30-06-2016)(ITA No. 957 of 2017 dt 4-11-2019)(AY. 2007-08)

PCIT v. Realvalue Realtors (P) Ltd. (2020) 113 taxmann.com 62 (Bom) (HC)

  1. 68 : Cash credits – Identity of creditor established – Need not prove the source of the source – Addition confirmed by the Tribunal is deleted

The assessee had taken unsecured loan from various persons. The Assessee has filed the confirmation letters. The AO has doubted the genuineness of the loan and made addition as cash credits. The Tribunal also confirmed the addition. On appeal by the assessee allowing the appeal the Court held that the assessee need not prove the source of the source. Accordingly the addition was deleted. Followed PCIT v. Veedhata Tower Pvt. Ltd. (2018) 403 ITR 415 (Bom) (HC). (ITA No. 6160 /Mum/2016 dt. 11-05-2017 (AY. 2010-11) (ITA No 1750 of 2017 dt. 22-01-2020)

Gaurav Triyugi Singh v. ITO (Bom) (HC) (UR)

  1. 68 : Cash credits – Share application money and share premium – Identity, genuineness of transaction, creditworthiness is proved – Deletion of addition is held to be justified

Dismissing the appeal of the revenue the Court held that, the assessee has proved, identity, genuineness of transaction, creditworthiness of the share application money and share premium hence deletion of addition by the Tribunal is held to be justified. Addition cannot be made as cash credits. (ITA No 4607 /Mum/2012 AY. 2008-09 dt. 18-10-2016) ITA No 991 of 2017 dt. 4-11-2019)

PCIT v. Shree Rajalakshmi Textile Park Pvt. Ltd. (2020) BCAJ-January-P. 46 (Bom) (HC)

  1. 68 : Cash credits – VDIS – Declaration of diamond jewellery – Sale of items after smelting – Weight of gold not disputed – Addition as cash credit is held to be not justified – Assessable as capital gains [S. 45, VDIS 1997, S. 65]

Assessee voluntarily disclosed gold and diamond jewellery u/s. 65(1) of VDIS, 1997 which was accepted and certificate was issued u/s. 68(2) of the Act. Assessee filed return by declaring negative income from sale of above said VDIS declared gold and diamond jewellery items, which had been converted into bullion after smelting and separating diamonds through a goldsmith. AO rejected assessee’s claim and brought entire sale consideration of VDIS declared items to tax under S. 68 of the Act. Tribunal upheld the order of the AO. On appeal the Court held that AO had not disputed weight or gold sold by assessee after smelting it from jeweller. Moreover, Tribunal in its various decisions in case of other assessee’s who were similarly placed, had accepted capital gain declared on sale of VDIS declared items after smelting them through various jewellers. Accordingly the Tribunal committed an error in not accepting sale invoices submitted by assessee on ground that it was not same items which had been shown and declared by them in VDIS. Addition was deleted. (AY. 1998-99)

Bhurat Sunilkumar (HUF) v. ITO (2019) 267 taxman 139 (Karn)(HC)

  1. 68 : Cash credits – Peak credit theory – Hawala transactions – Money laundering can be for oneself – Refusal to divulge details of persons from whom money was distributed – Entire amount to be added as income on basis of peak credit theory – Estimation of commission again at 2% as alleged commission shall be only on the amounts deposited, other than the incremental peak credit adopted for each year – Appeal is dismissed [Ss. 69, 69A]

Assessee had been carrying on a lodge it opened various bank accounts in the name of partnership firms constituted of the relatives and employees of the assessee. Substantial amounts came into such Bank accounts in all the subject assessment years and there were withdrawals made immediately on the deposits having come to the account. The AO added the peak credit in the accounts recovered were assessed under Ss. 68, 69 and 69A as unexplained cash credits and investments. Considering the fact that the entire transactions were hawala transactions, commission at the rate 2 per cent was also assessed as income of the assessee. The assessee contended that very allegation of hawala transaction would indicate that money which came into the accounts did not belong to assessee; but to those persons to whom it was distributed and, thus, there could not have been any addition made on the basis of peak credit. Tribunal upheld the addition. On appeal High Court held that money laundering can also be for oneself and there can be no presumption that it is for others, especially when the assessee refuses to divulge the details of the persons to whom money was distributed. When the assessee contested the proceedings with a stout denial and nothing more; various accounts being found to have been opened and operated on behalf of the assessee, the entire deposits therein had to be treated as assessee’s income. The AO himself adopted the peak credit in each year, which again was modified to incremental peak credit. Court held that the assessee cannot dissociate himself from the various accounts in view of the overwhelming evidence unearthed by the department connecting him to the various accounts maintained in the Bank and the depositions of the various witnesses summoned. Despite the fact that the Enforcement Directorate had found the assessee to be a hawala operator or money launderer, the assessment under Ss. 68, 69 and 69A of the incremental peak credit of the respective years, in the subject assessment years, taken from all the accounts to be perfectly in order. There can be a reasonable assumption that the incremental credit would be the income of the assessee, the remittances being found in favour of the assessee and the disbursal not having been proved or even admitted. As regards commission when incremental peak credits are taken as the income of the assessee for a particular year the said quantum shall not be treated for the purpose of 2 per cent commission and no addition shall be made on that count. Hence the commission shall be only on the amounts deposited, other than the incremental peak credit adopted for each year. (AY. 2002-03 to 2005-06)

K. P. Abdul Majeed v. ACIT (2019) 267 taxman 151 (Ker) (HC)

  1. 68 : Cash credits – Share capital – Identity of the investors were not in doubt – Furnished PAN, copies of the income tax returns of the investors as well as copy of the bank accounts in which the share application money was deposited in order to prove genuineness of the transactions – Not required to prove source of the source – Deletion of addition by the Tribunal is held to be justified

Dismissing the appeal of the revenue the Court held that, the identity of the investors were not in doubt. The assessee had furnished PAN, copies of the income tax returns of the investors as well as copy of the bank accounts in which the share application money was deposited in order to prove genuineness of the transactions. In so far credit worthiness of the creditors were concerned, the bank accounts of the investors showed that they had funds to make payments for share application money. The assessee was not required to prove source of the source. Nonetheless, the inquiries through the investigation wing of the department at Kolkata proved source of the source (PCIT v. NRA Iron & Steel (2019) 412 ITR 161 (SC) distinguished) (ITA No. 1231 of 2017, dt. 29-01-2020) (AY. 2010-11)

PCIT v. Ami Industries (India)P. Ltd. (Bom)(HC), www.itatonline.org

  1. 69 : Unexplained investments – Capital gains – Sale of property – Stamp valuation – Legal fiction cannot be invoked to make addition – Merely on the basis of stamp valuation addition cannot be made [Ss. 45, 50C, 69B, 263, Art, 265]

The assessee purchased a piece of land. Assessment was completed. Subsequently the order was set aside in revision and an addition was made to his income under S. 69 on the ground that there was a difference between the value of the land shown in the sale deed and the stamp value. The order of revision was upheld by the Tribunal. On appeal, High Court held that there was nothing on record to indicate what was the price of the land at the relevant time. Even otherwise, it was a pure question of fact. Apart from the fact that the price of the land was different from that recited in the sale deed unless it was established on record by the Department that as a matter of fact, the consideration as alleged by the Department did pass to the seller from the purchaser, it could not be said that the Department had any right to make any additions. The addition was not justified. (R/TA. No. 399 of 2019 dt 20-08-2019) (AY. 2011-12)

Gayatri Enterprise v. ITO (2020) 420 ITR 15 (Guj) (HC)

  1. 69C : Unexplained expenditure – Bogus purchases – Accommodation entries – Restricting the disallowances at 5% of alleged bogus purchases is held to be justified – Entire purchases cannot be disallowed [S. 37(1)n, 144]

The assessee is engaged in the business of manufacturing and dealership of all kinds of industrial power controlling instrument cables and related items. On the basis of the information received from the sales tax department the AO disallowed the entire purchases from the alleged hawala bill givers and passed the order u/s. 144 of the Act. On appeal considering the additional evidences added only 2% of the profit element on alleged purchases. On appeal by the revenue the Tribunal directed the AO to make further disallowance of 3% alleged purchases. Against the order of the Tribunal the revenue filed an appeal to the High Court. Followed, CIT v. Bholanath Polyfab Ltd. (2013), 355 ITR 290 (Guj) (HC) and distinguished the ratio in Kaveri Rice Mills v. CIT (2006)157 Taxman 376 (All) (HC), CIT v. La Medica (2001) 250 ITR 575 (Delhi) (HC) (Arising from ITA No. 7773/Mum/2014 dt. 3-11-2016 (ITA No. 1330 of 2017 dt 20-02-2020 (AY. 2010-11).

PCIT v. Rishabhdev Tachnocable Ltd. (Bom) (HC). www.itatonline. org

  1. 69C : Unexplained expenditure – Bogus purchases – Business of Civil Contractor – Even if the purchases made by the assessee are to be treated as bogus, it does not mean that entire amount can be disallowed – As the AO did not dispute the consumption of the raw materials and completion of work, only a percentage of net profit on total turnover can be estimated [S. 37(1), 68]

The Respondent-Assessee carried on business as a Civil Contractor. The assessment was reopened under Section 147 of the Income Tax Act. Information was received from the Sales Tax Department that Respondent-Assessee had taken bogus purchase entries of ₹ 1,69,48,368/- from the different parties. The reassessment order was accordingly passed on 17 February, 2014 determining the total income of ₹ 2,18,13,430/. On appeal CIT (A) who partly allowed the Appeal and sustained addition of based on the net profit @ 5.76 % on the contracted amount. On appeal by the revenue the Tribunal affirmed the order of the CIT(A). dismissing the appeal of the revenue the Court held that, even if the purchases made by the assessee are to be treated as bogus, it does not mean that entire amount can be disallowed- As the AO did not dispute the consumption of the raw materials and completion of work, only a percentage of net profit on total turnover can be estimated. Court also held that assuming that the Respondent – Assessee the purchasers from whom the purchases were made were bogus, in view of the finding of fact that the material was consumed, the question would be of extending the percentage of net profit on total turnover. This would be a matter of calculations by the concerned authority. In this context, if the CIT (A) and the Tribunal chose to follow the percentage arrived by the Settlement Commission in the Respondent-Assessee’s own case for the other years, this exercise cannot be considered as irregular or illegal. Followed PCIT v. Mohommad Haji Adam & Co (Bom) (HC) www. itatonline.org, PCIT v. Paramshakti Distributors Pvt. Ltd. (Bom) (HC) www.itatonline.org. (ITA No. 1453 of 2017 dt. 8-1-2020) (AY. 2019-10)

PCIT v. Pinaki D. Panani (Bom) (HC) www.itatonline. org

  1. 69C : Unexplained expenditure – Income from undisclosed sources – Bogus purchases – Bhanvarlal Jain group – Hawala concern – Addition cannot be made of entire purchases based on the report of Investigation wing – When sales are accepted purchases cannot be rejected – Estimate of profit of 3% of bogus purchases – Held to be justified – Appeal of revenue is dismissed – No question of law [S.260A]

The responded is in business in trading and manufacturing of silver, gold, diamonds stones and Jewellery. The AO on the basis of report of investigation wing Mumbai where in two purchases were made from Amit Diamonds which belongs to Bhanvarlal Jain group being a hawala concern, made addition of entire purchases. CIT(A) deleted the addition and confirmed 3% of amount of purchases. Tribunal affirmed the order of the CIT(A). On appeal by the revenue, dismissing the appeal of the revenue the Court held that the CIT(A) had found that the assessee had shown purchases as well as sales. If the sales were accepted, the Assessing Officer could not have rejected the purchases. Once the purchases were accepted, the difference between the inflated and actual price of purchases would be required to be disallowed and what would be the extent of difference would be a matter of estimate. The Commissioner (Appeals) had estimated this difference at 3 per cent of the bogus purchases and the Tribunal had accepted it. Whether an estimate should be at a particular sum or at a different sum can never be an issue of law. (Followed Sanjay Oilcake Industries v. CIT (2009) 316 ITR 274 (Guj)(HC) Referred N. K. Industries Ltd. v. Dy CIT (2017) 292 CTR 354/ 8 ITR-OL 336 (Guj) (HC), Vijay Proteins Ltd. v. CIT (2015) 58 taxmann.com 44 (Guj) (HC) (AY. 2011-12)

PCIT v. Shah Virchand Govanji Jewellers Pvt. Ltd. (2019] 418 ITR 472 (Guj) (HC)

  1. 80 : Return for losses – Claim for carry forward of loss – Return filed in old form – Filed revised form after due date – Entitle to carry forward the loss [S. 139(1), 139 (3)]

Assessee had filed its return on 31-10-2007, in old Form, its claim for carry forward of loss could not be allowed. New form was filed on 23-12-2008 i.e., beyond due date of filing of return. AO disallowed the claim for carry forward of loss. Tribunal allowed the claim of the assessee. On appeal by the revenue, High Court affirmed the view of the Tribunal. Court held that the assessee had not sought to gain any unfair advantage by filing return in old Form and moreover, it did later on comply with conditions of filing new Form. (AY. 2007-08)

CIT v. Zila Sahkari Bank (P.) Ltd. (2019) 112 taxmann.com 403/ 269 Taxman 56 (All) (HC).

Editorial : SLP of revenue is dismissed; CIT v. Zila Sahkari Bank (P.) Ltd. (2020) 269 Taxman 55 (SC)

  1. 80IB(10) : Housing projects –Completion of project – Partial construction of project – Eligible for exemption

Question raised before the High Court by the revenue was “Whether on the facts and in the circumstances of the case and in law, the ITAT has erred in holding that the project was complete on or before 31-03-2009 when occupation certificate was accorded only in respect of 9206.30 sq. mtr. against sanction of 11960.15 sq. mtr. ?”

Following the order of High Court in assessee’s own case bearing ITA No. 655 of 2017 dt 6-6-2019 for the AY. 2009-10 the question raised is decided against the revenue and in favour of the assessee. (ITA No. 2099/Mum/ 2015 dt 15-12-2016) (ITA No. 1755 of 2017 dt. 22-01-2020 (AY.2010-11)

PCIT v. Sadhana Builders Pvt. Ltd. (Bom) (HC) (UR)

  1. 80IB(10) : Housing projects – One of the unit constructed exceeded the upper limit – Deduction cannot be denied to entire housing projects – Exemption is not allowable only in respect of the unit exceeded the prescribed limits

Assessee claimed deduction under S. 80-IB(10) in relation to income of housing development. AO rejected assessee’s claim on ground that some residential units exceeded specified built up area of 1500 sq. ft. Tribunal held that simply because out of several units included in housing project, only in one of them, constructed area exceeded upper limit; that too, by a small margin, deduction claimed could not be denied in respect of entire housing project. High Court confirmed order passed by Tribunal.

PCIT v. Shreenath Buildcon (2019) 110 taxmann.com 389 (Guj) (HC)

Editorial : SLP of revenue is dismissed; PCIT v. Shreenath Buildcon. (2019) 267 taxman 115 (SC)

  1. 90: Double taxation agreement – Rate of tax Applicable to domestic company and not 65% – CBDT Circular is held to be applicable – DTAA – India-Japan [Arts. 7, 23, 24(2)]

The question before the High Court was “Whether on the facts and in the circumstances of the case, the tribunal was right in law in holding that the rate of tax applicable to the assessee would be the rate of 65% as held by the Tribunal to be applicable to assessee and not the rate applicable to a domestic company” After considering the various provisions of the DTAA the Court held that the stand taken in the Tribunal’s order cannot be appreciated or accepted since a similar clause in the double taxation avoidance agreement between India and the Netherlands was interpreted by the Central Board for Direct Taxes and a circular issued thereupon. The Tribunal held, in the present case, that since there was no similar circular, the benefit as available to a permanent establishment of ABN Amro Bank in India could not be extended to this assessee. When there is no dispute that there is a double taxation avoidance agreement in place between India and the country of origin of the assessee in the present case and when such agreement contains a lucid clause as apparent from Article 24(2) thereof quoted above and when Section 90 of the Act itself recognises such an agreement and creates a special status for the relevant permanent establishments, there was no room for either the Commissioner to wait for any dictat from the high command of the CBDT or for the Tribunal to demonstrate similar servile conduct in not appropriately interpreting and giving effect to the clear words of the agreement between the two countries. The reference is concluded by answering the first question raised as follows: The Tribunal was incorrect in holding that the rate of tax applicable to the assessee was 65%. The Tribunal ought to have held that the rate applicable to the assessee was such rate as applicable to a domestic company carrying on similar activities. (AY. 1991-92)

Bank of Tokyo Mitsubishi Ltd. v. CIT (2019) 310 CTR 479/ 181 DTR 220 (Cal) (HC)

  1. 139 : Return of income – Delay in filing revised return – Amalgamation – Sanction of company Law Tribunal is not binding on Income-Tax Authorities – Application for condonation of delay to me made [S. 119, Companies Act, 2013, S. 230(5), Constitution, Art. 226]

Pursuant to sanction of the scheme of arrangement the transferee company attempted to file revised returns without filing an application for condonation of the delay in filing them on the basis that the sanctioned scheme of arrangement and, in particular, clause 64(c) thereof, entitled such filing and was binding on the Income-tax authorities. This contention was accepted by a single judge under article 226 of the Constitution. On appeal, the Court held that the Department had been notified that the scheme of arrangement enabled the amalgamated company and transferee company to file returns and revised returns before the tax authorities, including the Income-tax authority. However, it could not be said that the Department had consented to waive the procedures or statutory requirements prescribed in the Income-tax Act for this purpose. In this regard, the order of the Company Law Tribunal whereby the scheme of arrangement was sanctioned also mandated that necessary permissions should be obtained and compliances fulfilled. The transferee company was required to comply with the procedure for filing a revised return belatedly. (AY. 2015-16, 2016-17)

ACIT v. Dalmia Power Ltd. (2019) 418 ITR 242 (Mad) (HC)

ACIT v. Dalmia Cement Power Ltd. (2019) 418 ITR 242 (Mad) (HC)

Editorial : Decision in Dalmia Power Ltd. (2019) 418 ITR 221 / 308 CTR 777/ 178 DTR 113/ 265 Taxman 37 (Mad) (HC) is reversed.

  1. 143(2) : Assessment – Notice – Mandatory – Block assessment – Non issue of notice – Assessment is held to be bad in law [S.132, 158BC]

Dismissing the appeal of the revenue the Court held that the assessment made by the AO without issuing the mandatory notice u/s. 143(2) of the Act is held to be bad in law.

CIT v. Sodder Builder And Developers (P.) Ltd. (2019)419 ITR 436 (Bom) (HC)

  1. 143(2) : Assessment – Notice – Limitation – Notice was not issued within prescribed time – Order is barred by limitation [S.143(3)]

Dismissing the appeal of the revenue the Court held that on the admitted fact situation the notice under S. 143(2) of the Act, was not given within prescribed time, and the Tribunal was justified in law in quashing the draft assessment order in pursuance of the notice under S. 143(2) holding the notice was barred by limitation. (AY. 2010-11)

CIT(IT) v. Cameron Singapore Pte. Ltd. (2019) 418 ITR 272 (Raj)(HC)

Editorial : Order in Cameron Singapore Pte. Ltd. v. Asst. DIT(IT) (2017) 58 ITR 202 (Trib) (Jaipur) is affirmed.

  1. 143(2) : Assessment – Notice under S. 143(2) of the Income Tax Act was never issued to the Assessee before initiating of proceedings under Section 158 BC of the Income Tax Act – Order is held to be bad in law [S. 158BB, 158BC, 260A]

Tribunal decided the quantum addition in favour of the assessee. In the cross objection the assessee raised the issue of non servicing the issue of notice u/s. 143(2) of the Act, though the ITAT has not given a finding against the assessee on the issue of notice u/s. 143(2) of the Act. Substantial question of law is raised at the time of final hearing of the appeal though it was not raised at the time of admission of appeal. Substantial question of law is admitted on following question of law “Whether non-issuance of notice under Section 143(2) of the Income Tax Act, 1961 vitiates that assessment proceedings under Section 158 BC of the Income Tax Act in view of the Judgment of the Hon’ble Supreme Court in ACIT v. Hotel Blue Moon 2010 3SCC 259?”

Following the ratio of Apex Court in ACIT v. Hotel Blue Moon, the Court held that the omission on the part of the Assessing Authority to issue notice under Section 143(2)cannot be regarded as a procedural irregularity and the same is not curable and such requirement cannot be dispensed with. Hon’ble Apex Court has held that even for the purpose of Chapter XIV-B of the Income Tax Act for determining of undisclosed income for block assessment in proceedings under Section 158BC, provisions of Section 142, 143(2) and 143(3) are applicable and no assessment can be made without issuing notice under Section 142 of the said Act. Accordingly the order is held to be bad in law. (TA No. 75 of 2008 /Misc A No. 179 of 2016 dt. 13-09-2019)

CIT v. Fomento Fianance & Investment (P) Ltd (2019) 183 DTR 340/ (2020) 312 CTR 88/ 421 ITR 146 (Bom) (HC)

  1. 143(3) : Assessment – E-Assessment – Post demonetization – The AO should at least call for an explanation in writing before proceeding to conclude that the amount collected by the assessee was unusual – The AO could have come to a definite conclusion on facts after fully understanding the nature of business of the assessee – Order of AO is set aside and the AO is directed to dispose the matter within sixty days of receipt of the order. [S.69A, 115BBE.]

The petitioner has challenged the order passed by the respondent on 27-12-2019 in respect of the amount received by the petitioner post demonetization i.e., between 09-11-2016 and 31-12-2016. the petitioner has prima facie demonstrated that the assessment proceeding has resulted in distorted conclusion on facts that amount collected by the petitioner during the period was huge and remained unexplained by the petitioner and therefore same was liable to be treated as unaccounted money in the hands of the petitioner under S. 69A of the Act. Therefore, the impugned order making the petitioner liable to tax at the maximum marginal rate of tax by invoking S. 115BBE of the Act. Court held that while E-Assessment without human interaction is laudable, such proceedings can lead to erroneous assessment if officers are not able to understand the transactions and accounts of an assessee without a personal hearing. Assessment proceeding under the changed scenario would require proper determination of facts by proper exchange and flow of correspondence between the assessee and the AO. The AO should at least call for an explanation in writing before proceeding to conclude that the amount collected by the assessee was unusual. Also, since the assessment proceedings no longer involve human interaction and is based on records alone, the assessment proceeding should have commenced much earlier so that before passing assessment order, the AO could have come to a definite conclusion on facts after fully understanding the nature of business of the assessee. AO is directed to dispose the matter within sixty days of receipt of the order. (W.P. No. 1732 of 2020 and W.M.P. Nos. 2006 & 2007 of 2020, dt. 04-02-2020)
(AY. 2-17-18)

Salem Sree Ramavilas Chit Company v. DCIT(2020) 114 taxmann.com 492 (Mad)(HC), www.itatonline.org

  1. 143(3) : Assessment – Remand by the Tribunal – Additional claim could be made in remand proceedings – Order of tribunal is set aside [S. 144, 254(1)]

The AO made the assessment u/s. 144 of the Act. The Tribunal set aside the matter to the AO for framing a fresh assessment. The AO passed the oder u/s 143(3) r.w.s 254 of the Act by making certain additions and disallowances. Order of the AO is upheld by the CIT(A). On appeal the Tribunal once again set aside the order of the CIT(A) and directed the AO to pass fresh order. The AO deleted the addition made in the first two rounds. The Assessee made afresh claim as regards the non taxability of income as regards write off liability by Canara Bank which was earlier offered as taxable income. The AO rejected the claim on the ground that in remand proceedings the assessee could not raise a fresh claim. CIT(A) also confirmed the order of the AO. Tribunal also affirmed the order of the CIT(A). On appeal the High Court held that the Tribunal has not appreciated the scope and nature of the remand ordered by the it by its earlier order dt. 10-03-2011. Accordingly the Court allowed the assessee to raise the claim and restored the matter back to the AO for evaluation of the said claim on its own merits. (AP. No. 259 of 2018 dt 28-11-2019) (AY. 2002-03)

Curewel (India Ltd v. ITO (2020) CTCJ – January-P. 87 (Delhi) (HC)

  1. 145 : Method of accounting –Accommodation entries – Estimate of commission – Rejection of accounts and estimate of income – Discretion must be exercised in a judicious manner – Tribunal is not justified in confirming the addition [S.144, 145(3)]

The AO estimated 10 per cent commission for providing accommodation entries to the tune of ₹ 12,00,02,100. The CIT(A) took the view that the estimation of commission at 10 per cent by the Assessing Officer is one-third of the benefit, which could be termed as excessive and not a reasonable estimate. The CIT(A) without there being anything on record, thought it fit to take the view that the estimate by the assessee at 3 per cent translated to 1 per cent of the benefit derived, which could be termed too low, and in such circumstances, estimated it at 2 per cent, which would translate to about 6.7 per cent of the benefit alleged to have been derived by PACL India Ltd. Tribunal confirmed the addition. On appeal the High Court held that this was nothing but pure guesswork without there being any material or basis for arriving at the same. The Tribunal was not right in law in confirming the addition. (AY. 2011-12)

Rameshchandra Rangildas Mehta, Prop. of M/s. Sunit Trading Company v. ITO (2020) 421 ITR 109 (Guj)(HC)

  1. 145 : Method of accounting – Real estate developer – Project completion method – Addition on the basis of percentage completion method is held to be not justified [AS-7]

Assessee is engaged in business of construction as a builder /real estate developer. It maintained books of account on basis of project completion method. AO made certain addition to assessee’s income by applying percentage completion method. Tribunal held that project completion method followed by assessee would not result in deferment of payment of taxes which were to be assessed annually under Act. Moreover, AS-7 issued by ICAI also recognized position that in case of construction contracts, assessee could follow either project completion method or percentage completion method. Tribunal further opined that there was no jurisdiction on part of AO to adopt percentage completion method for one year on selective basis. Accordingly the Tribunal deleted the addition. On appeal by the revenue the High Court affirmed the order of the Tribunal.

PCIT v. Panchsheel Colonizers (P.) Ltd. (2019) 267 Taxman 571/ 111 taxmann.com 459 (Raj) (HC)

Editorial : SLP is granted to the revenue, PCIT v. Panchsheel Colonizers (P.) Ltd. (2019) 267 Taxman 570 (SC)

  1. 145 : Method of accounting – Suppression of sales – Revenue was not able to show any defect in assessee’s records or in books of account maintained by assessee – Rejection of books of account is held to be not justified – Deletion of addition on account of suppression of addition is held to be justified [S 43CA, 50C, 145(3)]

The assessee was engaged in the business of property development. During year, the assessee sold several flats and received sale consideration. The AO held that the income on the sale of flats was available to tax in the assessment year 2004-05 and not in the assessment year 2005-06 on the basis that the project was completed in the previous year relevant to the assessment year 2004-05 and not assessment year 2005-06. However, the income offered by assessee for the assessment year 2005-06 was assessed on protective basis. Further, he found that there was suppression of sales value in respect of six flats. Thus, he made an addition on account of suppressed sales value in respect of six flats. CIT(A) partly allowed the assessee’s appeal holding that the project was completed in the assessment year 2005-06 and not in the assessment year 2004-05. However, he rejected the books of account under S. 145(3) and completed the assessment on best judgment basis. CIT (A) held that there was an understatement of sales value in respect of all twelve flats as there was suppression of value in all the twelve flats of the project, as the market rate then was ₹ 8,992 per sq. ft. for the assessment year 2005-06. Thus, the above rate of ₹ 8,992 per sq. ft. was applied to all the twelve flats to enhance the assessment to certain amount. On appeal Tribunal set aside the order of CIT (A) and held that neither the AO nor the CIT(A) had any material on record to show that the assessee received more than what was shown in the sale-deeds. Moreover, it held that there was no occasion to apply section 145(3) so as to reject the books in the absence of any defect in the books on account of being found. Thus, it deleted the enhancement of assessment. On appeal by the revenue, High Court affirmed the order of the Tribunal and also held that, provision introduced with effect from 1-4-2014 for deeming consideration received on sale of goods/assets on basis of stamp duty valuation would be applicable prospectively. (AY. 2005-06)

PCIT v. Swananda Properties (P.) Ltd. (2019) 267 Taxman 429 (Bom.)(HC)

  1. 147 : Reassessment – After the expiry of four years – Change of opinion – Interest income on fixed deposit assessed as business income – Reassessment on the ground that it has to be assessed as income from other sources.
    [S. 56, 148, Art. 226]

Assessee, in return of income claimed interest income earned on fixed deposit as part of its business income and AO disallowed same on ground that it did not carry out any business during year and passed assessment order under S. 143(3) on 30-03-2014 and subsequently AO issued reopening notice dated 26-03-2018 on ground that interest income was required to be taxed as income from other sources. On writ the Court held that notice was issued beyond period of four years from end of assessment year 2011-12 and there had been a complete disclosure of all material facts on part of assessee during regular assessment proceedings under S. 143(3), impugned notice was clearly hit by first proviso to section 147 and deserved to be set aside. (AY. 2011-12)

DCIT v. MSEB Holding Co. Ltd. (2019) 102 taxmann.com 288 (Bom) (HC)

Editorial : SLP of revenue is dismissed, since tax effect is less than  2 Crore. DCIT v. MSEB Holding Co. Ltd. (2020) 269 Taxman 22 (SC)

  1. 147 : Reassessment – After the expiry of four years – Without there being any element of lack of true and full disclosure on the part of the assessee – Reassessment notice is held to be bad in law [S. 115-0, 148]

The reassessment notice was issued on the ground that the assessee has resorted to dubious method of buyback of shares to avoid dividend tax. Thus the transaction is a colorable device to avoid tax and it clearly amounts to tax evasion. The assessee company has utilized the accumulated profit for buy back of the shares and this arrangement is a convenient ploy to get round the dividend distribution tax liability and the payment towards buyback was indeed divided. By not paying the dividend, the company has avoided DDT. Instead of paying dividend, the company has offered a buyback offer which is accepted by the holding company and therefore I have reason to believe that the income of
₹ 11,04,29,642/- chargeable to tax has been under assessed. On writ allowing the petition the Court held that issue of notice after expiry of four years, without there being any element of lack of true and full disclosure on the part of the assessee – Reassessment notice is held to be bad in law. (AY. 2011-12)

Firstsource Solutions Ltd. v. Dy. CIT (2019) 176 DTR 151 (Bom) (HC)

  1. 147 : Reassessment – After the expiry of four years – Bogus purchases – Accommodation entries – No failure to disclose material facts – Change of opinion – Reassessment is held to be bad in law [S. 69C, 148]

The petitioner is a partnership firm carrying on the business of manufacture and exports of diamonds. The assessment was completed u/s. 143(3) and thereafter reopening was done for alleged bogus purchases. The assessment was done by making GP additions. Thereafter the reassessment notice was issued again for alleged accommodation entries. On writ allowing the petition the Court held that the omission of the AO to make an assertion in the reasons that there was a failure to disclose fully and truly all material facts necessary for the assessment is sufficient to set aside the reassessment notice. Also, a notice issued on change of opinion is bad in law. (WP No. 2506 of 2019, dt. 12-12-2019) (AY. 2012-13)

Usha Exports v. ACIT (2020) 312 CTR 237/ 185 DTR 87 (Bom)(HC), www.itatonline.org

  1. 147 : Reassessment – Within four years – Change of opinion- Netting of interest earned and paid on borrowed capital – No new material – Notice for reassessment is held to be not valid [S.148, Art. 226]

Allowing the petition, the Court held that the entire question of taxing the assessee’s interest had been minutely scrutinised by the AO during the original assessment proceedings. The AO had asked the assessee to explain why certain interest earned was not offered to tax and the assessee had produced full details of the interest earned and the interest paid on the borrowed capital and had clarified that it had netted the interest received against the interest paid and had transferred the remaining amount to the work-in-progress account. In the absence of new material, reopening of the assessment under S 147 would be based on a mere change of opinion. The notice issued under S. 148 was to be set aside. (AY. 2013-14)

Rubix Trading Pvt. Ltd. v. ITO (2020) 421 ITR 330 (Bom) (HC)

Editorial : SLP of revenue is dismissed. ITO v. Rubix Trading Pvt. Ltd. (2019) 416 ITR 136 (St) (SC)

  1. 147 : Reassessment – Fishing enquiry – Information from intelligence wing – Builder – Make detailed enquiry – Reassessment is held to be bad in law. [S. 28(i), 148, Art. 226]

The assessee is builder. The assessment was completed u/s. 143(3) Subsequently AO reopened the assessment on the ground that record of assessee was checked and it was found that it was a builder and, therefore, to verify intelligence gathered by Intelligence Wing, it was necessary to carry out detailed inquiry, and the assessee had developed society land which according to information received did not contain any agreement. Assessee repeatedly pointed out to AO that it had neither developed any such project nor claimed exempt income arising out of such project. AO rejected the objection filed by the assessee. On writ the Court held that from reasons recorded it was very clear that AO wished to carry out a fishing inquiry. Accordingly the reopening of assessment could not be permitted for carrying out fishing inquiries. (AY. 2011-12)

Giriraj Enterprises v. ACIT (2019) 174 DTR 409 /102 taxmann.com 188 (Bom) (HC)

  1. 147 : Reassessment – Agricultural income – Advisory issued by the department – Verify the income – Undisclosed income – No tangible material – Reassessment is held to be bad in law [S.2(IA), 148, Art. 226]

Assessee filed its return of income showing agricultural income of certain amount which was accepted. On the basis of an advisory issued by department the AO was directed to thoroughly verify claims in respect of agricultural income earned by several parties including assessee. On basis of same, AO issued notice u/s 148 against assessee so as to treat its agricultural income as income from undisclosed sources. On writ the revenue admitted that the advisory contained in a letter which was issued in light of an order passed by this Court on a public interest litigation and required verification of agricultural income for certain period, which also included assessment year in question. Advisory directed AO to verify whether there was any data entry error in returns filed; to provide feedback where assessment was complete and in cases where assessment was pending, to thoroughly verify claims on agricultural income. Allowing the petition the Court held that reopening was simply founded on advisory issued by department and there was no tangible material in possession of AO for formation of belief about escarpment of income chargeable to tax, therefore reopening notice was unjustified. (AY. 2011-12)

Ravindra Kumar (HUF) @ Rabindra Kumar (HUF) v. CIT (2019) 266 Taxman 506 (Patna) (HC)

  1. 148 : Reassessment – Notice – Notice sent at address available in PAN database returned – Communication had to be delivered at address of assessee available with banking company – No service of reopening notice – Order making additions unjustified [S. 147, 282, R, 127, Art. 226]

Assessee never filed return of income as she did not have any taxable income. AO issued reopening notice which was dispatched for delivery through post. The postal authorities returned the notice with a remark ‘left’. AO did not take any further steps and carried on assessment and made additions to assessee’s income. High Court held that where delivery of notice could not be made at address of assessee available in PAN database, communication had to be delivered at address available with banking companies. Service of notice was not complete inspite of department having access to assessee’s bank account. Hence, impugned reassessment order making additions to income of the assessee was unjustified and impugned notice and order are set aside. (AY. 2011-12)

Harjeet Surajprakash Girotra v. UOI (2019) 180 DTR 257 /266 Taxman 29 (Bom.) (HC)

  1. 148 : Reassessment – Notice – Issue of notice prior to recording of reasons for reopening of assessment is held to be without jurisdiction – Deserves to be quashed – Defects could not be cured by invoking S. 292B of the Act [S. 147, 292B]

Dismissing the appeal of the revenue the Court held that issue of notice u/s. 148 without recording reasons for same, it was not a mere case of clerical error, but substantial condition for valid issue of reopening notice had not been fulfilled and, such a defect could not be cured by invoking provisions of S. 292B of the Act. (AY. 2004-05)

PCIT v. Tata Sons Ltd. (2019) 267 Taxman 13 (Bom) (HC)

  1. 151 : Reassessment- Sanction for issue of notice – Joint Commissioner of Income tax – Reopening of assessment with the approval of Commissioner is held to be not valid [Ss.147, 148, 151(2)]

Dismissing the appeal of the revenue, the Court held that, where the Act provides for sanction by the Joint Commissioner of Income tax in terms of S.151, then the sanction by the Commissioner of Income tax would not meet the requirement of the Act and reopening notice would be without jurisdiction. Followed Ghanshyam K. Khabarani v. ACIT (2012) 346 ITR 443 (Bom) (HC). (ITA No. 371 /Lkw/2016 dt 19-10-2016) (AY. 2008-09) (ITA No. 1035 of 2017 dt. 11-11-2019)

PCIT v. Khushbu Induatries (2019) BCAJ- January-P. 47 (Bom) (HC)

  1. 153A : Assessment – Search – Abated assessment – It is open to both parties, i.e. the assessee and revenue, to make claims for allowance or disallowance [S. 132, 139(1)]

Dismissing the appeal of the revenue the Court held that, once the assessment gets abated, the original return filed u/s. 139(1) is replaced by the return filed u/s. 153A. It is open to both parties, i.e. the assessee and revenue, to make claims for allowance or disallowance. The assessee is entitled to lodge a new claim for deduction etc. which remained to be claimed in his earlier/ regular return of income (CIT v. Continental Warehousing Corporation (Nhava Sheva) Ltd. (2015) 374 ITR 645 (Bom)(HC), referred) ITA No. 1934 of 2017, dt. 05-02-2020) (AY. 2008-09)

PCIT v. JSW Steel Ltd. (Bom)(HC), www.itatonline.org

  1. 194C : Deduction at source – Contractors – Failure to file TDS related documents at the time of filing of return of TDS – Procedural law – Fine can be imposed – Expenses cannot be disallowed – Matter remanded to the AO for readjudication [Ss. 40(a)(ia), 194C(6), 194C(7), 254(2), 260A]

The AO disallowed the expenses on the ground that the assesee has failed to file TDS related documents at the time of filing of return of TDS. Order of the AO is upheld by the Tribunal. On appeal High Court held that sub-section (6) of section 194C is the provision which grants benefit to the assessee. This benefit comes with the condition of compliance of sub-section (7) of section 194C, which is the procedure to be followed. Even assuming that the assessee had not furnished the particulars as required under sub-section (7) of section 194C in the prescribed form, the maximum that could be done is to impose a fine of ₹ 200 for every day of such non-compliance. Therefore, this procedural law, as prescribed under sub-section (7) of section 194C cannot takeaway the benefit, which will accrue to the assessee under sub-section (7) of section 194C. For the above reasons, the matter is to be remanded to the AO for a fresh consideration. Followed, CIT v. Sri Parameswari Spinning Mills (P.) Ltd. (2019) 108 taxmann.com 386 (Mad) (HC) referred ACIT v. Arihant Trading Co (.) 176 ITD 397 (Jaipur) (Trib). (AY. 2012-13)

Dilip Kumar. v. ACIT (2020) 269 Taxman 93 (Mad) (HC)

  1. 194C : Deduction at source – Contractors – Contract for sale of goods – Agreement for bulk sale of advertising space – Provision is not applicable

Allowing the appeal of the assessee the Court held that the S. 194C of the Act, would apply to a contract for work and not to a contract of sale. There is a distinction between the two concepts namely “contract for sale of goods” and “works contract”. In determining the question whether a contract constitutes one for work or is a contract of sale, the intention and object of parties has to be borne in mind, which is to be examined in the light of terms of the contract. The main object in a contract of sale is the transfer of property and delivery of possession of the property, whereas the main object in a contract for work is not the transfer of the property, but it is one for work and labour. On facts the assessee had entered into an agreement for bulk sale of advertising space with its holding company on a principal to principal basis by transfer of rights therein. The assessee under the agreement made purchase of advertisement space and exercised control over such space with the right to either sell it to another or retain it for itself. Thus, it was a transfer of advertising space to the assessee who in turn sold it to others. Therefore, the transaction could not be termed a contract for work, and S. 194C was not applicable. (AY. 2007-08)

Times VPL Ltd. v. CIT (2020) 421 ITR 170/ 312 CTR 284/185 DTR 139 (Karn) (HC)

  1. 194H : Deduction at source – Commission or brokerage – Bank credit card payment – Not liable to deduct tax at source – Lounce charges are covered u/s 194C and not u/s 194I of the Act [S. 40(a)(ia), 194I]

Questions raised before the High Court was the were :

(a) ”Whether, on the facts and in the circumstances of the case and in law, the Hon’ble ITAT was justified in upholding the order of the CIT (A) and holding that the amount retained by a bank/credit card agency out of the sale consideration of the tickets booked through credit cards is not covered under the definition of “commission or brokerage” given in the Explanation (i) to section 194H of the Act and the assessee was not liable to deduct tax at source under section 194H in respect of this amount?”

(b) “Whether, on the facts and in the circumstances of the case and in law, the Hon’ble ITAT was justified in holding that the use of lounge premises paid by the assessee were payments for contract of work under section 194C of the I.T. Act and not in the nature of rent as per section 194-I of the I.T. Act”

Following the ratio in CIT v. JDS Apparsal Ltd. (2015) 370 ITR 454 (Delhi) (HC) first question is answered in favour of the assessee. As regards question no (b) Following the Japan Airlines Company Ltd. (2015) 377 ITR 372 (SC) has overruled such decision of Delhi High Court. Supreme Court approved the view of Madras High Court in case of CIT v. Singapore Airlines Ltd (2013) 358 ITR 237 (Mad) (HC). (AY. 2009-10)

CIT v. Jet Airways India Ltd. (2019) 180 DTR 115 (Bom) (HC)

  1. 194C : Deduction at source – Contractors advertisement services – Principle of natural justice must be followed – Assessing Officer is not justified in deciding that tax should be deducted under Section 194J without giving an opportunity of hearing. [S.194J, 201(1) 201(IA), Art. 226]

The assessee is an advertising and media agency, engaged in the business of advertising by creative and production work, media planning and incidental activities. The assessee deducted the tax as per S. 194C of the Act. According to the revenue tax should have been deducted as per S. 194J of the Act as the rate applicable to professional or technical services. The Income-tax Officer (TDS) passed orders under section 201(1)/(1A) and held that the assessee had short tax deducted/not deducted tax at source to the tune of ₹ 91.10 crore during the assessment years. On a writ petition to quash the order the Court held that the orders could not survive the test of following the principles of natural justice. The Income-tax Officer (TDS) had collected extensive material, which was attributable to his own research, but never put such material to the assessee for its comments and most importantly his entire orders were founded on such research material. The orders were not valid. Accordingly the order was quashed. (AY. 2017-2018)

TLG India Pvt. Ltd. v. ITO (TDS) (2019) 418 ITR 324 (Bom)(HC)

  1. 194H : Deduction at source – Commission or brokerage – Guarantee commission paid to bank is not covered under commission or brokerage – Not liable to deduct tax at source. [Ss. 201(1) 201(IA)]

Dismissing the appeal of the revenue the Court held that payment of guarantee commission made by assessee to banks was not covered under commission or brokerage as defined under S. 194H of the Act. Followed CIT v. Larsen & Toubro Ltd. (2019) 260 Taxman 271 (Bom) (HC).

CIT v. Nimbus Communications Ltd. (2019) 266 Taxman 376 (Bom) (HC)

Editorial : SLP of revenue is dismissed; CIT v. Nimbus Communications Ltd. (2019) 266 Taxman 375 (SC)

  1. 199 : Deduction at source – Credit for tax deducted – Mismatch of TDS figures – Failure of deductor to upload the correct details in Form No. 26A – Benefit of tax deducted at source should be given to the assessee on the basis of evidence produced before the revenue authorities [S. 205, Form 26A]

In the assessment proceedings the revenue objected to assessee’s claim of Tax Deducted at Source from payments made on ground that there was mis-match in TDS certificate issued by deductors and aggregate amounts arrived at as appearing in Form 26-A. On appeal Tribunal held that though in case, deductor failed to upload correct details in Form 26-A, benefit of TDS should be given to assessee on basis of evidence produced before Department. Accordingly Tribunal directed the AO to verify correct facts and give credit of TDS to assessee. Tribunal relied on Yashpal Sahni v. Rekha Hajarnvis, Asstt CIT (2007) 165 Taxman 44 / 293 ITR 539 / 211 CTR 1 (Bom) (HC). On appeal by the Revenue High Court dismissed the appeal of the revenue.

PCIT v. Tata Communications Ltd. (2019) 267 Taxman 498 / 111 taxmann.com 258 (HC)

Editorial: SLP of revenue is dismissed; PCIT v. Tata Communications Ltd. (2019) 267 Taxman 497 (SC)

  1. 201 : Deduction at source – Failure to deduct or pay – Natural justice violated-The order of revenue must speak for itself and cannot be improved upon by an affidavit-in-reply filed by assessee, its not permitted- Orders of revenue were set aside – Matter restored to revenue for fresh disposal of show cause notice after following principles of natural justice i.e. due consideration of assessee submission by speaking order [Ss. 40(a)(ia), 194C, 194J, 197, 201(1), 201 (IA), Art. 226]

Assessee, advertising agency, recovers amount from its clients and makes payment to media owners for advertisement of its clients, on its media. While making payment, Assessee’s clients deduct tax at source u/s. 194C and assessee again deducts tax at source u/s. 194C while making payment to media owners. Show-cause notices were issued as to why it should not be treated as assessee in default u/s 201(1) and 201(1A) for failure to deduct tax on payments u/s. 194J and failure to deduct tax on provisions for expenses, which was disallowed u/s. 40(a)(ia) of the Act. Assessee filed the reply, however the AO held that assessee in default u/s 201(1) and 201 (1A) of the Act. On writ the Court held that when assessee filed representation in respect of proceedings u/s. 201 and 201(1A), revenue was in undue haste passed an order determining huge sums payable by assessee for failure to appropriately deduct tax. This entire exercise was done in undue haste as Revenue was obliged to issue tax deduction certificate u/s. 197. It was only on determination of assessee’s tax liability, could revenue reduce amount of tax to be deducted by assessee’s customers while making payment. Court held that the entire proceedings leading to orders were vitiated for breach of natural justice. Orders of revenue were set aside. The Court also observed that the order of revenue must speak for itself and cannot be improved upon by an affidavit-in-reply filed by assessee, its not permitted. Matter restored to revenue for fresh disposal of show cause notice after following principles of natural justice i.e. due consideration of assessee submission by speaking order. (AY. 2017-18, 2018-19, 2019-20)

TIG India Pvt. Ltd. v. DCIT (2019) 184 DTR 349 / (2020) 312 CTR 199 (Bom) (HC)

  1. 220 : Collection and recovery – Assessee deemed in default – Pendency of appeal before CIT(A) and condonation of delay – Offered to pay 10% of tax demand – Court directed the CIT(A) to dispose the application for condonation of delay – Not to recover further tax amount until disposal of applications for condonation of delay [S. 246A, Art. 226]

Petitioner filed appeals before CIT(A) along with applications for condonation of delay in filing appeals as also for stay on assessment orders. Petitioner, apprehending that respondent authority would go to next step and withdraw entire tax amount from its account already frozen by revenue, filed writ petition seeking direction to CIT(A) to keep all coercive proceedings including freezing of bank accounts of petitioner under abeyance till final disposal of said appeals. Petitioner also offered to deposit 10 percent of tax as demanded in assessment orders. Court directed the petitioner to deposit 10 percent of tax amount within a week whereas revenue should not recover tax amount until disposal of condonation of delay application within two weeks from assessee’s representation.

Hi Care Gloves (P.) Ltd. v. DCIT (2019) 267 Taxman 42 (Ker) (HC)

  1. 222 : Collection and recovery – Certificate to Tax Recovery Officer – Amalgamation – Tax Recovery Officer could not seek recovery of taxes of reassessment from assessee-company inasmuch as assessee neither had been served with notice of reopening of assessment, nor had any occasion to participate in such reassessment proceedings. [S. 147, 148, Art. 226]

Company Mahadev Floorings (India) Pvt. Ltd. was amalgamated with assessee-company. AO had reopened assessment of company Mahadev Floorings (India) Pvt. Ltd. and passed assessment order on raising tax demand upon it. Subsequently Tax Recovery Officer issued on assessee-company a notice to recover tax dues of company Mahadev Floorings (India) Pvt Ltd and on failure of assessee to pay tax dues of company Mahadev Floorings (India) Pvt Ltd had attached bank accounts of assessee. On writ the court held that Tax Recovery Officer could not seek recovery of taxes due of Mahadev Floorings (India) Pvt. Ltd. arising out of order of reassessment from assessee-company inasmuch as assessee neither had been served with notice of reopening of assessment, nor had any occasion to participate in such reassessment proceedings. Accordingly the notice of recovery was set aside and attachment of bank accounts were lifted. (AY. 2010-11)

Hinal Estates (P.) Ltd. v. UOI (2019) 266 Taxman 411 (Bom)(HC)

  1. 222 : Collection and recovery – Certificate to Tax Recovery Officer – Attachment and sale of immovable property – Limitation – Attachment of immovable property in 1997 – Proclamation of sale in February, 2019 – Barred by limitation [Sch. II R. 68B. Art. 226]

Allowing the petition the Court held that Part D of Chapter XVII of the Income-tax Act, 1961 pertains to collection and recovery of tax. Schedule II to the Act pertains to the procedure for recovery of tax. The Schedule contains detailed rules for recovery of unpaid taxes through various modes envisaged in sub-section (1) of section 222. One of the modes is attachment and sale of immovable property. Rule 68B was inserted with effect from June 1, 1992. For the first time with effect from June 1, 1992 a time-limit of a period of three years was prescribed for sale of attached immovable property starting from the end of the financial year in which the order giving rise to a demand of tax, interest, etc., became conclusive. Sub-rule (4) of rule 68B provides for the consequences of the immovable property not being sold within such time. Under this sub-rule in such a situation, the attachment order in relation to the property would be deemed to have been vacated on the expiry of the time-limit specified.

Court held, that the attachment of the immovable properties was ordered in the year 1997. The sale proclamation which was made in February, 2019 was thus, hit by the period of limitation prescribed under rule 68B. The sale proclamation was barred by limitation. (AY. 1974-75 to 1999-2000)

Sapana Charudatt Ranadive v. ITO (2019) 418 ITR 193 / 181 DTR 127 / 310 CTR 432 / 266 Taxman 4 (Bom) (HC)

  1. 225 : Collection and recovery – Stay of proceedings – Disputed demand – Deposit of 20 percent tax of demand is not a condition precedent – Directed to pass reasoned order [S.226, Art. 226]

Court held that the AO has to consider the case of the particular assessee on the merits and if he comes to the conclusion that the assessee has a case for grant of stay, then subject to deposit of 20 per cent. of the disputed demand, the outstanding demand may be stayed and in certain cases. The condition of pre-deposit of 20 per cent. of the disputed demand is neither contemplated by the memorandum nor is there legislative sanction mandating such deposit for hearing of an application for stay. Directed to follow the guidelines prescribed by the Bombay High court in UTI Mutual Fund v. ITO (2012) 345 ITR 71 (Bom) (HC); KEC International Ltd. v. B.R. Balakrishnan (2001) 251 ITR 158 (Bom) (HC), Coca Cola India P. Ltd. v. Add. CIT (2006) 285 ITR 419 (Bom) (HC)

Aarti Sponce & Power Ltd. v. ACIT (2019) 418 ITR 257 (Chhatisgarh) (HC)

  1. 234C : Interest – Deferment of advance tax – Demerger of the unit – Not justified in levying the interest for period before acquisition of cement business by assessee- Interest is directed to be waived. [S. 119(2), Art. 226]

Assessee-company was a successor of company Samruddhi Cement Ltd. which was incorporated on 4-9-2009 as a subsidiary of Grasim Industries Ltd. Grasim Industries Ltd demerged its cement unit which was taken over by Samruddhi Cement Ltd. Scheme of demerger was framed which envisaged 1-10-2009 as appointed date. Scheme was approved by High Court and effective date was fixed as 18-5-2010. Scheme provided that Grasim Industries Ltd. would carry on cement business from appointed date to effective date in trust and on behalf of SCL and advance tax payment made by Grasim Industries Ltd in respect of profits of cement business would be deemed to be paid by Samruddhi Cement Ltd and that scheme would have retrospective effect. Pursuant to such clause, Grasim Industries Ltd. paid advance tax on profits of cement business in two instalments falling due on 15-3-2012 and 15-9-2012. AO held that Samruddhi Cement Ltd had not paid advance tax instalments falling due on 15-6-2009 and 15-9-2009 and, thus, interest under S. 234C was levied. Assessee claimed for waiver of interest under S. 234C which was denied. Court held that scheme itself provided that all taxes paid by Grasim Industries Ltd. on profit of cement business arising on and after 1-10-2010 would be deemed to be paid by Samruddhi Cement Ltd. and scheme was approved having a retrospective effect. Further, Samruddhi Cement Ltd. was incorporated only on 4-9-2009 and company was not in existence on 15-6-2009. Further, by time second instalment fell due on 15-9-2009, cement business from Grasim Industries Ltd. was not acquired by Samruddhi Cement Ltd. Accordingly the interest levied upon assessee under S. 234C was to be waived. (AY. 2010-11)

Ultratech Cement Ltd. v. CIT (2019) 266 Taxman 390 (Bom) (HC)

  1. 237 : Refunds – Tax deduction at source – Refund cannot be withheld on account of computer glitch at Central Processing Center – Department was to be directed to release refund with statutory interest after manually computing same. Court also observed that “We expect the department to address this larger issue so that similar disputes do not have to travel to the High Court for resolution.” [Art.226]

Assessee suffered sizeable deduction of tax at source. In assessment, refund of ₹ 224.28 crore arose. Department raised issue that assessee had pending demands for other assessment years. Department stated that assessee’s refund claim had not been released on account of computer glitch at Central Processing Center presumably for reason that system was not accepting stay of demands so far made for other years. On writ the Court held that refund arose out of order of assessment could not be withheld on ground of technical difficulty of system. Accordingly the Department was to be directed to release refund with statutory interest after manually computing same. Court also observed that Per Court:

‘Surely, before the department, there would be large number of cases of assessees where the refund claim out of an order of assessment or appellate order arises as against which the same assessee may have demands for other assessment years, recovery of which may have been suspended. In all such cases, similar difficulty may be faced by the department. We expect the department to address this larger issue so that similar disputes do not have to travel to the High Court for resolution.’) (AY. 2014-15) WP No. 2435 of 2019 dt 4-10-2019)

Vodafone Idea Ltd. v. CIT (2019) 267 Taxman 408 (Bom.)(HC)

  1. 241A : Withholding of refund in certain cases – AO cannot withhold refund without processing the return as well as revised return u/s 143(1) – Show cause notice to withhold the refund was quashed – Withholding the refund is without authority of law and liable to be set aside. [S.143(1)]

Assessee filed its return seeking refund. Subsequently, return so filed was revised. Despite not having processed the return of income under section 143(1) a notice was issued by the Assessing Officer proposing to withhold the refund relatable to assessment year 2017-18, in view of section 241A.

On writ the Court held that S. 241A could only be invoked, after the refund due was determined under section 143(1) and, thus, impugned notice deserved to be quashed. Court held that it is an undisputed position that neither the regular return of income nor the revised return of income for the subject assessment year has been processed under section 143(1) till date. Consequently, the occasion to withhold any refund under section 241A at this stage does not arise. Therefore on the admitted facts the application/ invocation of section 241A of the Act is premature. Accordingly show-cause notice proposing to withhold refund due is quashed and set aside. (WP No. 1845 of 2019 dt. 16-09- 2019) (AY. 2017-18) (Also refer, WP No. 894 of 2019 dt 8-7-2019 (AY. 2015 16)

Tata Communications Ltd. v. Dy. CIT (2019) 267 Taxman 423 /182 DTR 249/311 CTR 1 (Bom.)(HC)

Tata Communications Ltd. v. Dy. CIT (2019) 181 DTR 9/310 CTR 805 (Bom.)(HC)

  1. 241A: Withholding of refund in certain cases – Tax deduction at source – Merely because a notice was issued u/s. 143(2), it was not a sufficient ground to withhold refund – Withhold refund and the order denying refund on this ground alone would be laconic. [S.143(ID), 143(2), 197, Art. 226]

The assessee filed application u/s. 197 of the Act to issue the certificate for lower deduction of tax at source at 0.8% ACIT allowed deduction of TDS @1% and issued a notice requesting assessee to produce evidence/documents in support of claims made in its return. In reply, assessee submitted its e-reply along with relevant documents. Since the, assessee had not received any hearing notice, or assessment order in terms of S. 143(3) and the assessee was facing acute financial crunch on account of blockage of funds in form of excess TDS and delay in processing of tax refund, it filed an online complaint on portal of Centralized Public Grievance Redress And Monitoring System and requested DIT to expeditiously process pending income tax return. Meanwhile, DIT issued an intimation processing ITR filed by assessee wherein, tax liability of assessee was assessed and refund amount due to assessee was determined along with eligible interest u/s. 244A. The AO issued the notice u/s. 143(2) of the Act and withheld the refund due to the assessee. On writ the court held that merely because a notice was issued u/s. 143(2), it was not a sufficient ground to withhold refund. Accordingly the AO was directed to grant the refund as per the law. (AY. 2017-18, 2018-19)

Maple Logistics Pvt. Ltd. v. (2019) 184 DTR 408 /(2020) 312 CTR 141 / 420 ITR 258 (Delhi) (HC)

  1. 244A : Refunds – Interest on refunds – Entitle to interest on excess self assessment tax from date of payments till refund [S.14OA, 244(1)(b)]

Dismissing the appeal of the revenue the High Court held that the assessee is entitled to interest on excess self assessment tax from date of payment till refund. Followed PCIT v. Bank of India (ITA No. 742 of 2016 dt. 10-12 2018).

PCIT v. Bank of India (2019) 112 Taxmann.com 327/ (2020) 268 Taxman 318 (Bom) (HC)

Editorial : SLP is granted to the revenue PCIT v. Bank of India (2020) 268 Taxman 318 (SC)

  1. 250 : Appeal – Commissioner (Appeals) – Duties – Must pass a speaking order on merits by expressing reasons and finding in support of the conclusion – Matter remanded to the CIT(A) for passing speaking order [Art. 226]

Assessee filed an appeal to CIT(A) against order of scrutiny assessment done by AO. CIT (A) disposed appeal holding that Assessing Officer’s order was a self speaking order and did not require interference. On writ the Court held that CIT(A) being a fact finding authority, had to consider assessment order on grounds raised in appeal and pass a speaking order on merits by expressing reasons and findings in support of conclusion. Accordingly the order of CIT(A) was set aside and matter was to be remitted for passing fresh order, such order must be a speaking order with reasons and findings. (AY. 2016-17)

Ajji Basha v. CIT (2019) 267 Taxman 545 (Mad.)(HC)

  1. 251 : Appeal – Commissioner (Appeals) – Powers – CIT(A) has the power to decide stay petition – He should not direct the assessee to file stay petition before AO
    [S. 220(6), Art. 226]

Assessee filed petition before CIT(A) for stay of demand in assessment order. CIT (A) directed assessee to file stay applications before AO under S. 220 of the Act. On writ the Court held that discretion and power is independently available to CIT(A) to decide stay petitions. Since he disposed of stay applications by an order that was merely in nature of an advice, he failed to exercise discretion and jurisdiction vested with him. Accordingly the matter remanded to CIT (A) to decide the stay petition on merits. Followed Mavilayi Service Co-Operative Bank Ltd v. CIT (2019) (2) KLT 597 (FB) (Ker) (HC)

Kallettumkara Service Co-operative Bank Ltd. v. ITO (2020) 268 Taxman 10 (Ker) (HC)

  1. 254(1) : Appellate Tribunal- Duties – Relying on the case laws not cited by both the parties – Not dealing with the case law cited by the representative of the assessee – Matter remanded to the Tribunal to pass the fresh order. [S.80IB (10)]

The Tribunal dismissed the appeal of the assessee by relying on 63 cases which were not cited by either side. The Tribunal also not given any finding on case law relied by the authorised representative. High Court at the stage of admission itsself allowed the appeal by observing that, this manner of disposing appeals by the Tribunal is not expected of it and cannot stand to the scrutiny of law and justice. The Tribunal cannot refer to decisions on its own without giving the litigant an opportunity to distinguish it. This results in a breach of the principles of natural justice. It also cannot omit to deal with the decisions relied upon by the litigant. Not dealing with the cited decisions leads to the order being bad as an order without reasons. Accordingly the matter remanded. (ITA No. 1009 of 2017, dt. 30-01-2020) (AY. 2007-08) (also refer, DSP Investment Pvt. Ltd. v. Add. CIT ITA No 2342 of 2013 dt 8-3-2016 (Bom) (HC), Reliance Infrastructure Ltd. v. Dy. CIT ITA No. 701 of 2014 dt. 29-11-2016 (Bom) (HC), Dattani and Co. v. ITO ITA No. 847 of 2013 dt 21-10-2013 (Guj) (HC), Lakhmi Mewal Das v. ITO (1972) 84 ITR 649 (Cal) (HC) (659), Kranti Associates Pvt. Ltd. v. Masood Ahamed Khan & ors (2010) 9 SCC 496)

Bhavya Construction Co. v. ACIT (Bom)(HC), www.itatonline.org

  1. 254(1) : Appellate Tribunal – Duties Ex-partedecision on first day of hearing – Issue covered in earlier years – Rejection of application for recalling the order is held to be not justified – Directed to hear the appeal on merits. [S.254(2), Art. 226]

In course of appellate proceedings, assessee did not cause appearance before Tribunal. Tribunal allowed revenue’s appeal ex-parte. Assessee filed an application under S. 254(2) of the Act to recall said order. Tribunal rejected assessee’s application on ground that assessee was not able to point out any mistake in Tribunal’s order. On writ the Court held that Tribunal had decided issue in revenue’s favour on first date of hearing itself and, thus, Tribunal could have accommodated assessee’s request for rectification of order. Court also held that the issue before Tribunal was a recurrent issue and assessee had succeeded in respect of same in earlier years. Accordingly the order of Tribunal rejecting assessee’s application was set aside and, matter was to be remanded back to Tribunal for disposal on merits of case. (AY. 2000-01)

Universal Cold Storage Ltd. v. DCIT (2020) 268 Taxman 178 (Mad)(HC)

  1. 254(1) : Appellate Tribunal – Duties – Delay of 253 days in filing the appeal before the Tribunal is condoned – Directed the assessee to deposit 10,000 / with the Maharashtra State Legal Services Authority and submit receipt of the same before the office of the Tribunal – Directed the Tribunal to decide on merit [S.12A(3), 253]

The assesee has preferred an appeal before the Tribunal against the cancellation of the registration. The appeal was delayed by 253 days and affidavits were filed. Tribunal refused to condone the delay on the ground that there were inconsistencies in the affidavit filed by the assessee. On appeal High Court condoned the delay and directed the Tribunal to decide on merit. Court also directed the assessee to deposit ₹ 10,000/- with the Maharashtra State Legal Services Authority and submit receipt of the same before the office of the Tribunal. (ITA No. 942/PUN/2010 dt 21-03-2017). (ITA No 1762 of 2017 dt 22-01 2020 (AY. 2009-10)

Nandkishor Education Society v. CIT (Bom) (HC) (UR)

  1. 254(1) : Appellate Tribunal – Duties – Strictures – Disallowance of administrative expenses – Matter remanded to the Tribunal following the earlier year order. [S.40(a)(ia), 40(b)(a), 194C]

The department has raised the question regarding the disallowance of expenses for failure to deduct tax at source. During the course of the arguments, learned standing counsel for Revenue has fairly placed before the Court a copy of order of this Court in the case of CIT v. ITD CEM India JV, (2018) 405 ITR 533 (Bom) (HC) and submits that the same issue was gone into by this Court in respect of the same assessee for the assessment year 2008-09. Regarding deletion of the disallowance under the head of ‘administrative expenses’, it was held that it was a concurrent finding of fact and no substantial question of law arose therefrom. However, on the question of deletion of the amount of salary which was disallowed by the Assessing Officer under Section 40(ba) of the Income Tax Act, 1961, the same was remanded back to the Tribunal for a fresh decision on merit and in accordance with law. Honourable Court referred “para 25. However, we have expressed our displeasure and unhappiness at the manner in which the Tribunal approached the matter/issue insofar as the applicability of Section 40(ba) (question no. 10(a) reproduced above) of the IT Act is concerned, we allow this Appeal. We set aside the Tribunal’s order to that extent. We restore the issue to the file of the Tribunal for being decided afresh on merits and in accordance with law. The Tribunal shall not be influenced in any manner by it’s earlier observations. We also clarify that when we note the rival contentions, beyond that exercise, we have expressed no opinion on the correctness of these contentions. All of them are open insofar as this issue is concerned for being raised before the Tribunal. There will be no order as to costs.” Following the order the matter is remanded to the Tribunal. (ITA No. 1246/Mum/2015 dt. 19-10-2016) (ITA NO. 1742 of 2017 dt. 20-01-2020 (AY. 2011-12)

PCIT v ITD CEM INDIA JV (Bom) (HC) (UR)

  1. 254(1) : Appellate Tribunal – Powers – Jurisdictional issue – Reassessment – CIT(A) has not decided – Deemed to have been decided against – Rule 27 of the Income Tax Tribunal Rules would entitle a respondent who has neither preferred an appeal nor cross objections to relief on a point decided in favour of the appellant by the lower appellate authority – Order of Tribunal, quashing of reassessment and also on merit is affirmed [S.80IA, 147, 148, R. 27]

Assessment which was completed u/s. 143(3) was reopened and disallowance was made in respect of claim u/s. 80IA of the Act. Before CIT(A) the appellant challenged the jurisdiction u/s. 147 as well as on merits. CIT(A) decided the issue on merits and held that as he is deciding on merits it is not necessary to decide the issue on reassessment. Revenue filed an appeal before the Tribunal. The assessee neither filed an appeal nor filed any cross objection. The assessee filed application under Rule 27 and challenged the reassessment proceedings. The Tribunal held that when the CIT(A) has decided the issue, it is presumed that the issue is decided against the assessee hence the application under Rule 27 is held to be valid and accordingly the Reassessment was quashed. The Tribunal also affirmed the order of the CIT(A) on merit. On appeal by the revenue, dismissing the appeal the Court held that Rule 27 of the Income-Tax Tribunal Rules would entitle a respondent who has neither preferred an appeal nor cross objections to relief on a point decided in favour of the appellant by the lower appellate authority. Court also held that the language employed in Rule 27 of the Rules is clear and it deals with cases where the respondent may support the order on the grounds decided against him. Rule 27 of the Rules states that though the respondent may not have appealed, he may support the order appealed against on any of the grounds decided against him. As pointed out by us earlier, the CIT(A) has recorded that the validity of the reassessment proceedings was hotly debated before him. However, the CIT(A) proceeded to take up the issue relating to the relief, which the assessee would be entitled to under Section 80-I of the Act and proceeded to grant the same on the close of its order and the CIT(A) would state that since the appeal has been allowed on merits under Section 80-I of the Act, there is no necessity for him to give a finding on the issue of reopening of assessment under Section 147 of the Act. Thus, the CIT(A) did not adjudicate the correctness of the reassessment proceedings, which was challenged by the assessee. It is deemed that the said issue was decided against the assessee and that the assessee was entitled to canvass the said issue before the Tribunal without independently filing an appeal in the light of the Rule 27 of the Rules. Therefore, the Tribunal was right in permitting the assessee to argue on the issue relating to the validity of the reassessment proceedings. (AY. 1996-97)

CIT v. India Cements Ltd. (2019) 181 DTR 105 (Mad) (HC)

  1. 254(1) : Appellate Tribunal- Powers – Registration – Interpretation – Tribunal can direct the Commissioner to grant the registration. [Ss.12A 12AA]

The Appellate Tribunal while hearing an appeal in a matter where registration under S. 12AA has been denied by the Commissioner can itself pass an order directing the Commissioner to grant registration if it disagrees with the satisfaction of the Commissioner on the basis of material already on record before the Commissioner. However the power is not to be exercised as a matter of course and remand to the Commissioner is to be made where the Tribunal records a divergent view on the basis of material which has been filed before it for the first time. Remand for determination of the question regarding grant of registration to a trust would also be necessitated in cases where the registration application has been rejected by the Commissioner on technical grounds without recording his satisfaction as contemplated under S. 12AA of the Act, 1961 and such decision is overturned by the Tribunal. The powers of the Appellate Tribunal are co-extensive with the powers of the Commissioner under S. 12AA of the Act, 1961 subject to what has been indicated above. However an order for registration can be issued only after recording satisfaction with regard to the genuineness of activities of the trust as provided under S. 12AA. The words “as it thinks fit” used in relation to the powers of the Appellate Tribunal exercisable under S. 254(1) of the Income-tax Act, 1961 are of the widest amplitude. The expression confers wide jurisdiction enabling the appellate authority to take an entirely different view on the same set of facts. The powers given under S. 254 are to be read along with other provisions of the Act.

CIT v. Reham Foundation. (2019) 418 ITR 205 (FB)(All (HC)

  1. 254(2) : Rectification of mistake apparent on record – Application for rectification was filed within period of six months – Order recalling the order is beyond period of limitation is held to be valid. [S.255(5), ITAT R. 24, Art. 226]

Tribunal recalled its order in the case of Nutrela Marketing Pvt. Ltd. v. ITO ITA No. 3910/ Mum/ 2010 dt 10-01-2018 and placed for hearing. After hearing the Tribunal recalled the earlier order on 1-2-2019. On writ the department contended that miscellaneous application was filed by the assessee on 9-7-2018 i.e., within period of six months however the Tribunal did not dispose of the same within the period of limitation, hence the order passed by the Tribunal is beyond the jurisdiction. Court held that the initial order passed by the Tribunal on 10th January, 2018 was an ex-parte one for the AY. 2006- 07. The limitation of six months as noticed above was substituted by the Finance Act, 2016 with effect from 1st June, 2016. Therefore, for the assessment year under consideration the limitation period may be construed to be four years from the date of the order. Even otherwise, if a view is taken that since the order was passed by the Tribunal on 1st February, 2019, the substituted limitation period of six months would be applicable, then also it is seen that the said period of six months was available to respondent till 31st July, 2018. Respondent had filed the application for recall of the ex-parte order on 9th July, 2018 within the limitation period of six months. However, Tribunal passed the impugned order only on 1st February, 2019. Court also observed that from a careful reading of the provision, it is seen that Tribunal is vested with the power to rectify any mistake apparent from the record to amend any order passed by it under sub-section (1) of Section 254 at any time within six months from the end of the month in which the order was passed, provided the mistake is brought to its notice by the assessee or by the Assessing Officer.. The use of the expression “may” in the aforesaid provision is clearly indicative of the legislative intent that the limitation period of six months from the end of the month in which the order was passed is not to be construed in such a manner that there can not be any extension of time beyond the said period of six months. This is so because the assessee or the Assessing Officer can only bring the mistake to the notice of the Tribunal. The assessee or the Assessing Officer has no control over the Tribunal. For one reason or the other, the Tribunal may not be in a position to pass the order under Section 254(2). For the inability of the Tribunal to pass such an order within the period provided, neither the assessee nor the revenue should suffer. What therefore becomes relevant is that the assessee or the Assessing Officer should bring the mistake to the notice of the Tribunal within the limitation period. (Referred Srei Infrastructure Finance Ltd. v. Tuff Drilling Private Limited, (2018) 11 SCC 470. Grindlays Bank Ltd. v. Central Government Industrial Tribunal, 1980 Supp SCC 420, Kapra Mazdoor Ekta Union v. Birla Cotton Spinning and Weaving Mills Limited, (2005) 13 SCC 777, Sree Ayyanar Spinning and Weaving Mills Ltd. v. CIT (2008) 301 ITR 434 SC, Harshavardhan Chemicals and Minerals Limited v. UOI (2002) 256 ITR 767 (Raj) (HC), Assam Company Ltd. v. State of Assam (2001) 248 ITR 567 (SC)) (MA No. 483/M/2018 dt. 1-02-2019 (AY. 2006-07) (WP No. 2858 of 2019 dt 24-01-2020)

PCIT v. ITAT (Bom) (HC) (UR)

  1. 263 : Commissioner- Revision of orders prejudicial to revenue – Rectification of mistake – When the claim is justifiably allowed by the AO the rectification order could not be construed to be erroneous and prejudicial to the interest of revenue [S.154]

AO on the basis of rectification application rectified the assessment order and allowed unabsorbed depreciation of earlier years. CIT revised the order. On appeal the appellate Tribunal set aside the revision order following the judgement in in CIT v. Virmani Industries Pvt. Ltd., (1995) 216 ITR 607 which view has been followed by several High Courts as well as by the Tribunal and held that when the claim of the respondent was justifiably allowed by the assessing officer then the same could not have been interfered with by the Commissioner by invoking the provisions of S. 263 of the Act because the rectification order could not be construed to be erroneous and prejudicial to the interest of Revenue. On appeal by the revenue, High Court affirmed the view of the Tribunal. (Arising from I.T.A. No. 3055/ Mum/2015 dt. 28-10-2015) (ITA No. 1029 of 2017 dt 23-2-2020 (AY. 2011-12)

PCIT v. Destimoney India Services Pvt. Ltd. (Bom) (HC)

  1. 264 : Commissioner – Revision of other orders – Income from sale of property is shown as short term capital gains – Revision application made to assessee the income as business income – CIT is directed to dispose the petition expeditiously. [S.5A, 28(i), 45(2), 143(1), Portuguese Civil Code, Art. 226]

Petitioners have filed the return of income showing the sale of property income as short term capital gains. The return was accepted u/s. 143(1) of the Act. The petitioner there after filed the revision application u/s. 264 of the Act contenting that they have wrongly shown as short term capital gains the correct position should have been the income should have shown as business income. CIT rejected the petition on the ground that application on the ground that it was afterthought to avoid the payment of capital gains tax. Allowing the petition the Court held that the petitioners have made a genuine error hence directed the CIT to dispose the petition expeditiously as possible and in any case within a period of four months from today. (WP No. 924 of 2019 dt. 14-1-2020 (AY. 2015-16)

Rajesh Prakash Timlo v. PCIT (Bom) (HC) (UR)

Vidya Rajesh Timlo v. PCIT (Bom) (HC) (UR)

  1. 264 : Commissioner – Revision of other orders – Rejection revised return and rectification application – Delay in filing revision application – Directed to condone the delay – CIT is directed to decide on merit [S.139(5), 143(1), 154, Art. 264]

Court held that the revised return was rejected under S. 139(5) on a technical ground. The assessee filed a rectification application, on which no orders were passed. Without passing orders on the application for rectification, a demand notice was issued triggering a second application for rectification from the assessee which came to be dismissed. A demand was made on January 31, 2018, the second rectification request was filed by the assessee on February 25, 2018, the second rectification having been dismissed on July 2, 2018, the assessee ultimately filed a petition under S.264. Therefore, this was not a case where the assessee had not acted in time. The rejection of the application for revision solely on the ground of delay was not justified. CIT is directed to decide on merits. (AY. 2009-10)

Ramupillai Kuppuraj v. ITO (2019) 418 ITR 458 (Mad) (HC)

  1. 271(1)(c) : Penalty – Concealment – Depreciation – Claim was withdrawn in the course of search proceedings – Deletion of penalty by the Tribunal is held to be justified [S.32, 132(4), 153A]

Assessee filed its return claiming depreciation on its intellectual property rights. During the course of search proceedings as per the statement u/s. 132(4) director of the company reduced the claim of depreciation. AO imposed penalty under S. 271(1)(c) for raising a false claim. On appeal the Tribunal held claim of depreciation being a plausible claim, mere fact that same was withdrawn during subsequent search proceedings, would not give rise to penalty. Followed CIT v. Reliance Petro Products (P) Ltd. (2010) 322 ITR 158 (SC) (AY. 2004-05)

PCIT v. Financial Technologies India Ltd. (2019) 112 taxmann.com 398 / (2020) 269 Taxman 33 (Bom) (HC)

Editorial : SLP of revenue is dismissed ; PCIT v. Financial Technologies India Ltd. (2020) 269 Taxman 32 (SC)

  1. 271(1)(c) : Penalty – Concealment – Revised return filed prior to issuance of notice u/s. 153C – No satisfaction was recorded – Deletion of penalty is held to be valid. [S.153C]

Dismissing the appeal of the revenue the Court held that, revised return filed prior to issuance of notice u/s. 153C and no satisfaction was recorded, deletion of penalty is held to be valid. Mak Data Pvt Ltd v. CIT (2013) 358 ITR 593 (SC) (AY. 2010-11)

PCIT v. Prabhjot Kaur Chhabra (Smt.) (2019) 419 ITR 94 (MP) (HC)

Editorial : SLP of revenue is dismissed, PCIT v. Prabhjot Kaur Chhabra (Smt.) (2019) 416 ITR 78 (St)

  1. 271(1)(c) : Penalty – Concealment – Survey – Amount disclosed in the survey was included in return – Return was accepted – Levy of penalty is held to be not valid. [S.133A]

Dismissing the appeal of the revenue the Court held that amount disclosed in the survey was included in return. Return was accepted. Accordingly levy of penalty is held to be not valid. (AY. 2012-13)

CIT v. Shree Sai Developers. (2019) 418 ITR 306 (Guj) (HC)

  1. 271AAA : Penalty – Search initiated on or after 1st June, 2007 – Undisclosed income and specifies manner in which such income derived – Failure of the raiding party to elicit a response from assessee regarding manner of deriving income – Deletion of penalty by the Tribunal is held to be valid [Ss.132(4), 271AAA(2)]

Dismissing the appeal of the revenue the Court held that, failure of the raiding party to elicit a response from assessee regarding manner of deriving income- Deletion of penalty by the Tribunal is held to be valid. (R/TA No. 836 of 2028 dt 10-07-2018) (AY. 2011-12)

CIT v. Backbone Enterprise Ltd. (2020) 420 ITR 305 (Guj) (HC)

  1. 271AAA : Penalty – Search initiated on or after 1st June, 2007 – Undisclosed income and specifies manner in which such income derived – Failure of the raiding party to elicit a response from assessee regarding manner of deriving income – Deletion of penalty by the Tribunal is held to be valid [S.132 (4), 271AAA(2)]

Dismissing the appeal of the revenue the Court held that both the CIT (A) as well as the Tribunal had recorded concurrent findings of fact that during the course of search the director of the assessee-company had admitted undisclosed income of ₹ 15 crore as unaccounted cash receivable, for the year under consideration, i.e., financial year 2010-11. The director of the assessee in his statement, had explained that the income was earned out of booking/selling shops and had specified the buildings. Thereafter the assessee could not be blamed for not substantiating the manner in which the disclosed income was derived. The cancellation of penalty by the Tribunal was justified. (R/TA No. 174 & 540 of 2019 dt. 17-09-2019) (AY. 2011-12)

CIT v. Patdi Commercial and Investment Ltd. (2020) 420 ITR 308 (Guj) (HC)

  1. 271AAA : Penalty – Search initiated on or after 1st June, 2007 – Statement u/s. 132(4) – Partner specifying the manner in which the disclosed income was earned – Entitle to claim immunity [S.132(4)]

Dismissing the appeal of the revenue the Court held that, during the process of recording a statement of the assessee under S. 132(4). In reply to a query to a partner of the assessee-firm to elaborate on the details of the undisclosed income and how it was earned by him and the group, the partner had stated that the undisclosed income of
₹ 35 crore declared by him and his group was earned out of a land-related transaction which was not recorded in the books of account. He had further stated that the break-up of such income person-wise and firm-wise would be submitted after opening the bank locker and that such disclosure was made with the consent of the family members and all the partners. The answer of the partner thus, in addition to confirming the disclosure of the undisclosed income, further stated that the income was earned by the group out of a land-related transaction which was not previously recorded in the books. This was thus specifically in compliance with the requirement of establishing the manner in which the income was earned. Although at that stage, he could not give the break up of such income person-wise or firm-wise citing the reason of sealing of the bank locker that would not be of much relevance. The answer was in sufficient compliance with the requirement of the disclosing the manner of earning the income.

PCIT v. Sun Corporation (2019) 419 ITR 414 (Guj) (HC)

  1. 276 : Offences and prosecutions – Deposit of self assessment tax belatedly – No inference can be drawn that there was wilful attempt on part of assessee to evade payment of tax – Prosecution was quashed [S. 132, 140A, 276CC]

The assessee is a co-operative society. The premises of the assessee was subjected to search and seizure under S. 132. Consequent to search, the AO issued a notice under S. 153A to file its return of income for the assessment years 2006-07 to 2011-12. Since there was no compliance of the aforesaid notice, the AO issued a show-cause notice calling upon the assessee as to why prosecution for the offence punishable under S. 276CC could not be initiated.

In response to the said show-cause notice, the assessee filed returns of income for the assessment years 2010-11 and 2011-12 and declared the total income of certain amount and the total tax payable at certain amount. But the assessee failed to pay the self-assessment tax along with the return of income under section 140A. Thereafter, the assessee sent a cheque of certain amount towards self-assessment tax due. On the back of the said cheque, it was instructed that ‘cheque to be presented at the time of registration of the property’. In view of this instruction, department did not encash the said cheque. The revenue contended that the assessee had willfully and deliberately made an attempt to create circumstances to enable them to evade payment of tax, a compliant was lodged before the court for economic offences, seeking prosecution of the assessee for the offence punishable under S. 276C(2) of the Act. Respondent-department has pointed out that all the payments were made by the petitioners subsequent to the lodging of the compliant and therefore, the said payment do not absolve the petitioner from the rigors of S 276C(2). Even the cheque was issued with a rider not to encash the same. These circumstances, clearly disclose mens rea on the part of the petitioners to evade tax and hence there is no reason to quash the proceedings. The gist of the offence under S. 276C(2) is the wilful attempt to evade any tax, penalty or interest chargeable or imposable under the Act. What is made punishable under this section is an ‘attempt to evade tax penalty or interest’ and not the actual evasion of tax. ‘Attempt’ is nowhere defined in the Act or in the Indian Penal Code. In legal echelons ‘attempt’ is understood as a ‘movement towards the commission of the intended crime’. It is doing ‘something in the direction of commission of offence’. Viewed in that sense, in order to render the accused guilty of ‘attempt to evade tax’ it must be shown that he has done some positive act with an intention to evade tax. In the instant case, the only circumstance relied on by the respondent in support of the charge levelled against the petitioners is that, even though accused filed the returns, yet, it failed to pay the self-assessment tax along with the returns. This circumstances even if accepted as true, the same does not constitute the offence under section 276C(2). The act of filing the returns by itself cannot be construed as an attempt to evade tax, rather the submission of the returns would suggest that petitioner No. 1 had voluntarily declared his intention to pay tax. The act of submitting returns is not connected with the evasion of tax. It is only an act which is closely connected with the intended crime, that can be construed as an act in attempt of the intended offence. A positive act on the part of the accused is required to be established to bring home the charge against the accused for the offence under section 276C(2).

In the case on hand, conduct of the assessee making payments in terms of the returns filed by him, though delayed and made after coercive steps were taken by the department do not lead to the inference that the said payments were made in an attempt to evade tax declared in the returns filed by him. Delayed payments, under the provisions of the Act, may call for imposition of penalty or interest, but by no stretch of imagination, the delay in payment could be construed as an attempt to evade tax so as to entail prosecution of the petitioners for the alleged offence under section 276C(2). In that view of the matter, the prosecution initiated against the petitioners, is illegal and tantamount to abuse of process of Court and is liable to be quashed. For the aforesaid reasons, petitions are allowed. The proceedings initiated against the petitioners are quashed. It is made clear that this order shall not come in the way of the department taking necessary steps for recovery of tax, if any, due and payable by the petitioners in accordance with law. (AY. 2006-07 to 2011-12)

Vyalikaval House Building Co operative Society Ltd. v. IT (2019) 267 Taxman 81 (Karn)(HC)

Wealth-tax Act, 1957

  1. 25 : Commissioner – Revision of other orders – Condonation of delay – Beyond six years – CBDT circular prescribing time limit for condonation – Not binding on High Court – Delay condoned and directed the Commissioner to decide on merit. [S. 2(ia)(i)(4), 25(1)(c) (ii), ITAct, S. 264 Art. 226]

The petitioner erroneously included the commercial and residential properties for the purpose of wealth tax though the said properties were let out for a minimum period of 300 days and exempt as per S. 2(ia)(i) (4) of the Act. The petitioner became aware of the exempt provision in the year 2015. The petitioner filed an application for revision of the order with application for condonation of delay. The Commissioner rejected the applications for condonation of delay by referring the Circular of the Board No 9 of 2015 (R. No 312/22/15-OT) (2015) 374 ITR 25 (St) wherein the Board instructed that delay beyond six years from the relevant year cannot be condoned. On writ the Court held that petition pertained to assessment years 2003-04 to 2012-13. This was a case of over-statement of wealth and it was not a case of understatement or non-filing of returns. More importantly, the assessees had also paid the tax on the wealth that had been overstated in the returns. The respondent had even recorded in the orders that the properties which had been erroneously included in the returns by the petitioners were clearly exempt under section 2(ea)(i)(4) of the Wealth-tax Act. The order was to be set aside in so far as it rejected the assessees’ request for condonation of delay for the assessment years 2003-04 to 2010-11. The other part of the order wherein the prayer for condonation of delay for the assessment years 2011-12 and 2012-13 was acceded to was to be sustained. Court held that the Circular is not binding on High Court. (AY. 2003-04 to 2012-13]

Lakshmi Muthukrishnan v. PCIT (2019) 418 ITR 513 (Mad) (HC)

Vasanthi Muthukrishnan v. PCIT (2019) 418 ITR 513 (Mad) (HC)

  1. 271AAA : Penalty – Search initiated on or after 1st June, 2007– AO must establish there was undisclosed income – estimated income not undisclosed income – No specific finding in respect of any specific seized material or undisclosed income detected as a result of search – Penalty is not leviable [S.132]

The AO levied a penalty of ₹ 76,42,611/- under S. 271AAA of the Income-tax Act, 1961 at 10 per cent after computation of an undisclosed income of ₹ 7,64,26,117/-. The penalty order did not provide for any specific finding in respect of any specific seized material or undisclosed income detected as in the course of search. The CIT(A) deleted such the penalty on the grounds that the Assessing Officer had not examined the matter properly under S. 271AAA and assessed the income mechanically either on an estimated basis or on account of the assesse’s inability to produce audited accounts for certain entities. The CIT (A) had specifically noted in the quantum proceedings that the principles of natural justice were not followed. On appeal, it was held that the burden of proof in the penalty proceedings is independent and greater than in the assessment proceedings and the assessment proceedings and penalty proceedings are different. While levying the penalty, the AO had nowhere mentioned specifically any undisclosed income within the meaning of undisclosed income given under S. 271AAA . The penalty order was devoid of any specific finding in respect of any specific seized material or undisclosed income detected as a result of search. It was incumbent upon the Assessing Officer to first establish that there was undisclosed income within the meaning of S. 271AAA before any penalty under the section could be levied. (AY. 2012-13)

DY. CIT v. Himanshu Verma (2019)76 ITR 698 (Delhi) (HC)

  1. 12AA : Procedure for registration – Trust or institution – Proposed activities – Registration cannot be refused on the ground that no activities are carried out

Court held that registration can be applied for by a newly registered trust. There is no stipulation that the trust should have already been in existence and should have undertaken any activities before making the application for registration. The term ‘activities’ in s. 12AA includes ‘proposed activities’. The CIT must consider whether the objects of the Trust are genuinely charitable in nature and whether the activities which the Trust proposed to carry on are genuine in the sense that they are in line with the objects of the Trust. However, he cannot refuse registration on the ground that no activities are carried out. (CA Nos. 5437-5438/2012, dt. 19-2-2020)

Ananada Social and Education Trust v. CIT (SC), www.itatonline.org

  1. 43B : Certain deductions on actual payment – The credit of Excise Duty earned under MODVAT scheme is not sum payable by the assessee by way of tax, duty, cess – unutilised credit under MODVAT scheme does not qualify for deduction – Sales tax paid by the appellant was debited to a separate account titled ‘Sales Tax recoverable account’ and is liable for disallowance [S. 43B]

The scheme of S. 43B is to allow deduction when the sum is actually paid. (i) The credit of Excise Duty earned under MODVAT scheme is not sum payable by the assessee by way of tax, duty, cess. It is merely the incident of Excise Duty that has shifted from the manufacturer to the purchaser and not the liability to the same. Consequently, the unutilised credit under MODVAT scheme does not qualify for deduction u/s. 43B. (ii) The sales tax paid by the appellant was debited to a separate account titled ‘Sales Tax recoverable account’ and is liable for disallowance u/s. 43B. (CA No. 11923 of 2018, dt. 07-02-2020) (AY. 1999-2000)

Maruti Suzuki India India Ltd. v. CIT (2020) 114 taxmann.com 129 (SC), www.itatonline.org

Editorial: Order in Maruti Udyog Ltd. v. CIT (2017) 88 taxmann.com 98 /(2018) 253 Taxman 60/ 406 ITR 562 (Delhi) (HC) is affirmed.

  1. 45 : Capital gains – Transfer – Permission to builder to start advertising, selling, construction on land – Licence to builder not amounting to possession of asset – Memorandum of compromise in 2003 under which agreement confirmed, and receipt by assessee of part of agreed sale consideration confirmed – Gains arose in previous year in which memorandum of compromise entered into, and taxable in that assessment year. [S. 2(47)(v), 2(47)(vi), Transfer of Property Act, 1882, S. 53A]

The assessee entered into an agreement to sell with Vijay Santhi Builders Ltd. on May 15, 1998 for a total sale consideration of ₹ 5.5 crore. The agreement provided, inter alia, that both parties were entitled to specific performance of the agreement. Under the agreement the assessee gave permission to the builder to start advertising, selling, and make construction on the land. Pursuant to the agreement, a power of attorney was executed on November 27, 1998, by which the assessee appointed a director of the builder-company to execute, and join in execution of, the necessary number of sale agreements or sale deeds in respect of the schedule mentioned property after developing it into flats. The power of attorney also enabled the builder to present before all the competent authorities such documents as were necessary to enable development on the property and sale thereof to persons. Subsequently, a memorandum of compromise dated July 19, 2003 was entered into between the parties, under which the agreement to sell and the power of attorney were confirmed, and a sum of ₹ 50 lakh was reduced from the total consideration of ₹ 6.10 crore. Clause 3 of the compromise deed confirmed that the assessee had received a sum of ₹ 4,68,25,644 out of the agreed sale consideration. Clause 4 recorded that the balance ₹ 1.05 crore towards full and final settlement in respect of the agreement entered into would be paid by seven post-dated cheques. Clause 5 stated that the last two cheques would be presented only upon due receipt of the discharge certificate from one Pioneer Homes. The assessee not having filed any return for the assessment year 2004-05 the assessment of the assessee for this year was reopened. Since the assessee did not respond to notices and limitation was running out the Assessing Officer passed an order of best judgment assessment treating the entire sale consideration as capital gains and bringing it to tax. The CIT(A) dismissed the assessee’s appeal therefrom. The Appellate Tribunal agreed with the CIT(A). High Court also affirmed the order of the Tribunal. On further appeal affirming the order of High Court the Court held that, agreement to sell, such licence could not be said to be “possession” within the meaning of section 53A of the Transfer of Property Act, 1882, which is a legal concept, and denotes control over the land and not actual physical occupation of the land. This being the case, section 53A of the 1882 Act could not possibly be attracted to the facts for this reason alone. As on the date of the agreement to sell, the owner’s rights were completely intact both as to ownership and to possession even de facto, so that section 2(47)(vi) of the 1961 Act equally, could not be said to be attracted. That the finding of the Tribunal was that all the cheques mentioned in the compromise deed had, in fact, been encashed. This being the case, the assessee’s rights in the immovable property were extinguished on the receipt of the last cheque and the compromise deed could be stated to be a transaction which had the effect of transferring the immovable property in question. The transaction fell under S. 2(47)(ii) and (vi) of the 1961 Act. (CA No 462 of 2011 dt 25-1-2012 (Mad) (HC) is affirmed) (AY. 2004-05)

Seshasayee Steels P. Ltd. v. ACIT (2020) 421 ITR 46 (SC)

  1. 80HHC : Export business – Supporting manufacturer – Supporting manufacturer is at par with actual direct exporter of goods when it comes to deductions that are available – Remanded the matter back to Tribunal for fresh adjudication [S. 28(iiid)]

Allowing the appeal of the revenue the Court held that in CIT v. Baby Marine Exports (2007) 290 ITR 323 (SC) was dealing with an issue related to the eligibility of export house premium for inclusion in business profit for the purpose of deduction u/s. 80HHC of the Act, whereas in the present appeals the point for consideration is completely different, being as to whether the assessee being supporting manufacturer are to be treated on par with the direct exporter for the purpose of deduction of export incentives u/s. 80HHC of the Act. Accordingly the judgment of High Court is set aside and matter is remanded back to Appellate Tribunal for adjudication afresh.

CIT v. Carpet India. (2019) 267 Taxman 93 (SC)

Editorial: Order in CIT v Carpet India (2008) 174 Taxman 417 (P& H) (HC) is set aside.

  1. 80IA : Industrial undertakings – Conversion of a partnership firm into a company – Part IX of Companies Act – As per S. 575 of the Companies Act, the conversion of a partnership firm into a company under Part IX causes a statutory vesting of all assets of the firm into the company without the need for a conveyance – The business of the firm is carried on by the company and the latter is eligible for the benefits of S. 80IA (4) of the Act. [S.80IA(4), Companies Act, S.575]

Dismissing the appeal of the revenue the Court held that As per S. 575 of the Companies Act, the conversion of a partnership firm into a company under Part IX causes a statutory vesting of all assets of the firm into the company without the need for a conveyance. The business of the firm is carried on by the company and the latter is eligible for the benefits of S. 80IA (4) of the Act. Order in Chetak Enterpeises v. ACIT (2005) 95 ITD 1 (Jodh) (Trib) is approved. (CA No. 1764 of 2010, dt. 05-03-2020) (AY. 2002-03).

CIT v. Chetak Enterprises Pvt. Ltd (2020) 115 taxmann.com 108 (SC), www.itatonline.org

  1. 139 : Return of income – Delay in filing revised return – Amalgamation – Approval by NCLT – Revised return filed after due date of filing of return is irrelevant – Not required to seek condonation of delay by CBDT
    [S. 119(2) (b), 139 (5), 170]

Allowing the appeal of the assessee the Court held that. The consequence of amalgamation is that the amalgamating companies lose their separate identity and cease to exist. The successor is obliged u/s. 170 to file a revised return to reflect the effect of the amalgamation. The fact that the revised return is filed after the due date specified in S. 139(5) is irrelevant as the scheme approved by the NCLT provides for it. The assessee is also not required to seek condonation of delay u/s. 119(2)(b) (CA Nos. 949699 of 2019 (Arising out of SLP (C) Nos. 19678681 of 2019 dt. 18-12-2019) (AY. 2016-17)

Dalmia Power Ltd. v. ACIT (2019) 112 taxmann.com 252/(2020) 312 CTR 113/ 420 ITR 339/ 185 DTR 1 (SC), www.itatonline.org

Editorial: Order in ACIT v. Dalmia Power Ltd. (2019) 418 ITR 242 (Mad)(HC) is reversed.

  1. 153C : Assessment – Income of any other person – Search and seizure – Compliance with the requirements of recording of satisfaction is mandatory – If the AO of the searched person and the other person is the same, it is sufficient for the AO to note in the satisfaction note that the documents seized from the searched person belonged to the other person. Once the note says so, the requirement of s. 153C is fulfilled. [S. 132(1), 133A 158BD]

Court held that if the AO of the searched person is different from the AO of the other person, the AO of the searched person is required to transmit the satisfaction note & seized documents to the AO of the other person. He is also required to make a note in the file of the searched person that he has done so. However, the same is for administrative convenience and the failure by the AO of the searched person to make a note in the file of the searched person, will not vitiate the proceedings u/s. 153C. (ii) If the AO of the searched person and the other person is the same, it is sufficient for the AO to note in the satisfaction note that the documents seized from the searched person belonged to the other person. Once the note says so, the requirement of s. 153C is fulfilled. In such case, there can be one satisfaction note prepared by the AO, as he himself is the AO of the searched person and also the AO of the other person. However, he must be conscious and satisfied that the documents seized/recovered from the searched person belonged to the other person. In such a situation, the satisfaction note would be qua the other person. The requirement of transmitting the documents so seized from the searched person would not be there as he himself will be the AO of the searched person and the other person and therefore there is no question of transmitting such seized documents to himself. Remanding the matter to the Tribunal is held to be justified. (CA No. 2006-2007 of 2020, dt. 05-03-2020)

Super Malls Pvt. Ltd. v. PCIT (2020) 115 taxmann.com 105 (SC), www.itatonline.org

Editorial : Order in PCIT v. Super Malls Pvt. Ltd. (2016) 76 taxmann.com 267 (Delhi) (HC) is affirmed

  1. 244A : Refund – Interest on refunds – Unauthorized retention of money by the Department – The Department is directed to pay interest as prescribed

Allowing the petition the Court held that the interest on refund is compensation for unauthorized retention of money by the Department. When the collection is illegal & amount is refunded, it should carry interest in the matter of course. There is no reason to deny payment of interest to the deductor who had deducted tax at source and deposited the same with the Treasury. The Department is directed to pay interest as prescribed u/s. 244A at the earliest (UOI v. Tata Chemicals Ltd. (2014) 363 ITR 658 (SC) followed) (CA 3826 of 2012, dt. 12-12-2019)

Universal Cable Ltd. v. CIT (2020) 420 ITR 111/ 312 CTR 1/ 185 DTR 33 (SC), www.itatonline.org

  1. 260A : Appeal – High Court – Monetary limits – Pendency of appeals – No cascading effect nor issue involved in group matters – Appeals of department dismissed – Question is kept open [S.268A]

The High Court held that where a substantial question of law is involved, the mere fact that a monetary limit had been prescribed for filing appeals by the Department would not be a bar to deciding the appeal, and that even otherwise, this was an exceptional case where the Department was justified in filing the appeal, and proceeded to decide the appeal on the merits, answering the questions of law in favour of the Department, on appeal to the Supreme Court. Allowing the appeal the Court held that instruction No. 5 of 2008 dt. 15-5-2008 is applicable to pending matters, subject to two caveats provided in CIT v. Surya Herbal Ltd. (2013) 350 ITR 300 (SC). Followed DIT v. S.R.M B. Dairy Farming (P) Ltd. (2018) 400 ITR 9 (SC) The judgment of the High Court was set aside and the Department’s appeals before the High Court treated as dismissed because of low tax effect, leaving the questions of law open.
(AY. 1991-92 to 2001-02)

  1. C. Naregal. v. CIT (2019) 418 ITR 455/ 267 Taxman 563/ 311 CTR 849/ 184 DTR 247 (SC)

Editorial : Decision in CIT v. S. C. Naregal (2010) 329 ITR 615 (Karn) (HC) is set aside because of low tax effect, leaving the question of law open.

  1. 269UD : Purchase by Central Government of immovable properties – Auction process is conducted bona fideand in public interest – Appellant given several opportunities to bid in fresh auction conducted but not doing so – Sale confirmed in favour of fresh buyer – No arbitrariness

Dismissing the appeal the Court held that several auctions were conducted from the year 1994, including an auction as recent as March 27, 2017 which failed to elicit a response from any buyer. Ultimately, the auction with the reserve price of  ₹  30 crore, on which the appellant’s bid was ₹ 30.21 crore, was kept in abeyance because in a report dated September 26, 2017 it was pointed out that this figure was considerably lower than the figure offered by the appellant itself at ₹ 32.11 crores and that, therefore, a fresh auction be held. This reason was not, in any manner, arbitrary. After all, it was in public interest to see that the highest possible price be fetched for such properties. Further, at every stage valuation reports were submitted by reputed valuers, first from Mumbai, and then from Chennai, and there was no reason to doubt what had been stated to be the fair market value in any of these reports. Though the appellant was given several opportunities to bid in the fresh auction conducted, ultimately, for reasons best known to it, it chose to refrain from participating therein. So long as the auction process was conducted bona fide and in public interest, a judicial hands-off was mandated. Ordinarily, reasons must inform all Governmental decisions including administrative decisions of the Government so that both the administration as well as challenges made to such orders, could be said to be fair and not arbitrary. The reasons disclosed both in the report dated September 26, 2017 and the letter dated April 6, 2018 from the Government of India, Ministry of Finance, to the Chief Commissioner of Income-tax, made it clear that there was no arbitrariness discernible in the entire auction process.

Court also held that respondent No. 4 to the offer made to the court. From the figure of ₹ 35 crore, which was to be paid within a period of 12 weeks directly to the Union Treasury, a sum equivalent to interest of 9 per cent on the amount of ₹ 7.78 crore, lying with the Union, calculated from the date on which it was deposited with the Union till date shall be subtracted, and the net figure handed over.

Sankalp Recreation Pvt. Ltd. v. UOI (2019) 418 ITR 673 / 267 Taxman 565 (SC)

Editorial: Order in Sankalp Recreation Pvt. Ltd v. UOI (2019) 411 ITR 671 (Bom) (HC) is affirmed

Interpretation of taxing statutes – Constitution of India

  1. 141 : Precedent – SLP dismissal – Non-speaking order – It does not constitute a declaration of law under Article 141 of the Constitution, or attract the doctrine of merger. [Art, 136]

Court held that the dismissal of an SLP by the Supreme Court against an order or judgment of a lower forum is not an affirmation of the same. If such an order is non-speaking, it does not constitute a declaration of law under Article 141 of the Constitution, or attract the doctrine of merger. Followed Kunhayammed v. State of Kerala (2000) 245 ITR 360 (SC), (2000) 5 SCC 359, Khoday Distilleries v. Sri Mahadeshwara Sahakara Sakkare Karkhane Ltd. (2019) 4 SCC 376 (CAO(S). 9533-9537 of 2019, dt. 18-12-2019)

P. Singaravelan v. District Collector (SC), www.itatoline.org

The shattering news

Holika dahan festival on 9th march 2020 ended with a shattering news of sudden demise of young Shivam, son of our Immediate Past President Dr. Ashok Saraf. The members from all over India poured their Condolence messages. Few of us could reach in time for funeral while some of us could attend the prayer meeting. AIFTP family stand by our Past President Dr. Ashok Saraf in his hours of grief. We pray to the God to bestow eternal peace to the departed Soul and express our deepest condolences to Dr. Ashok Saraf and his family.

GST – Acceptance of Technical Glitches

After more than 30 months of introduction of GST coupled with grave hardship and harassment of taxpayers and tax consultants, the GST Council has ultimately accepted that the system suffered from technical glitches. Unfortunately, despite this acceptance, no remedial measures are offered to the affected person. The transition credit issue is still being considered by various Courts including Bombay High Court. The GST Council should have allowed as a one-time measure to file the Tran-1.

Taking lesson from the past, the Council has rightly postponed the new return filing system till the entire new technical support is ready. Needless to say, the tax consultant spent endless time in learning and grasping the intricacies of the new system. Nonetheless, rather than facing the technical glitches, it is wise that to postpone the entire new return system.

I am happy to say that few of the suggestions made by us are accepted by the Council. The first and foremost being accepting to give retrospective effect to the proposition to levy interest on the net amount. In the area of interest there are still few burning issues which remain unresolved. There are cases where the registered person has paid the amount due within the time prescribed but for various reasons have failed to file the return in time. Such dealers have no remedy under the law. As for interest on net amount I must thank our past president, Hon’ble Dr. M. V. K. Moorthy and Hon’ble Dr. Saraf for filing the writs in the respective courts. It is also true despite the judgment of the Madras High Court in case of Refex Industries Ltd, the officers all over India continued to issue notices for gross interest. The CBIC Board must instruct the officers to follow the High Court judgments, not following the same would amount to contempt of court. The orders levying interest on Gross, wherever passed should be suo moto rectified. Due date for filing GSTR 9 & 9C for the period 2018-19 is extended up to only 30th June 2020 as against our request to extend it up to 30th September 2020.

The GST Council should be generous in extending the time up to September as in the present crisis of Coronavirus, during the month of March and in the first week of April, there would be prohibition and restriction to attend the offices.

The issue in relation to 36(4) of CGST Act is not dealt with by the GST Council. Merely providing the new facility of “know your supplier” would not help the bona fide buyer in getting the input tax credit. While the facility being installed, it must be ensured that the facility is updated from time to time so that the information is available on real time basis. We have also represented about allowing to claim excess input tax credit in the annual return. Unfortunately, the Council has not discussed this well deserved proposition. I have requested all the zonal chairmen and vice presidents to request the concerned Commissioner and Chief Commissioner.

Havoc of Corona

Usually in the month of March all the stakeholders are busy with recovery and time barring matters. This March would be an exceptional one with the Central and State Governments wanting all the merchandises to suspend functioning to stop the spread of coronavirus. The High Court and Tribunals have made it clear that except for very urgent matter, no one should go in the premises. While the entire world appreciates the efforts by the Government of India in taking steps to control the spread, the future is grave at least for next few weeks and we, the citizens of India, should remain indoors unless essentially required. Closure of offices or partial working of the offices or work from home should be strictly followed to ensure that the public at large understand the importance and magnitude of the problem.

As a measure to stop people gathering, the ensuing National Tax Conference at Mahabaleswar is postponed. Junagadh and Muzaffarpur were the two last conferences which were allowed to be proceeded. None of the zones of AIFTP would be organizing any seminar or gathering till further clearance by the Government.

Work from home gives ample opportunity to learn more, to read more. The Website Committee Chairman, Shri Hitesh Shah, is shortly going to arrange series of webcasting on various subjects. I propose to have various webcasting from different places of India to involve maximum participation. The webcasting would be on burning subject, the decision would be made by the experts in the field and after the webcasting the AIFTP HO would be receiving e-mail in which the viewers can put their queries to ensure that each and every query is answered. The benefit of webcast is that it is free for all the members of the AIFTP and not only the members but all the staff and the juniors of the members can also listen to the webcast.

The first webcast would be around 24th of March 2020, obviously it will be on the subject ‘Vivad se Vishwas’ scheme. We are awaiting the rules and the forms. After receiving the same, the exact date and time would be announced by mass email to each member. This would give an opportunity to the members to keep abreast with the latest information. In the month of April, there would be one more webcast on GST. I request member to send the suggestion for the subject as also the queries in relation to the subject.

We are also going to have e-publication on ‘Vivad se Vishwas’ scheme. The publication is ready and the authors are waiting for the rules and the forms to make it a complete publication. This publication is free to all the members. Here also, I am proposing to have at least three to four e-publications during my tenure.

While I wish well being of all the members I request all of you to take utmost care to follow the “Do’s & Don’ts” circulated by the Government Department and other authorized institutions during this critical period to stay safe and healthy.

Nikita R. Badheka
National President, AIFTP

Is the appointment of the Hon’ble Members of the ITAT on tenure basis for four years, constitutionally valid? When the process of appointment of the Members of the ITAT is working satisfactorily for more than 79 years, why is a change desired?

The Constitution Bench of the Hon’ble Supreme Court in the case of Rojer Mathew v. South Indian Bank Ltd. & Ors. 2019 (369) ELT 3 (SC), declared that the Tribunal, Appellate Tribunal and other Authorities (Qualification, Experience and other Conditions of Service of Members) Rules, 2017 as unconstitutional for being violative of principles of independency of the judiciary and contrary to earlier decisions of the Hon’ble Supreme Court. A direction was also given to the Central Government to reformulate the rules in accordance with principles delineated by the Court in its earlier decisions. However, the reframed rules viz. The Tribunal, Appellate Tribunal and other Authorities (Qualifications, Experience and other Conditions of Service of Members) Rules, 2020 (‘Rules’), notified on 17th February 2020 by the Ministry of Finance was not of much help. The Rules 2020 ought to have been better than Income tax Appellate Tribunal (‘ITAT’) Rules 1963, however the said Rule are contrary to the law laid down by the Hon’ble Supreme Court. In the event, the Hon’ble members are appointed on tenure basis it will affect the independency of an institution which has been functioning for more than seven decades. The Tax professionals across the country has strongly opposed the Rules 2020.

The AIFTP has taken lead by filing petition before the Hon’ble Bombay High Court and the Revenue Bar Association Chennai has also filed similar petition. The main grounds of challenge are as follows s:

(a) In the case of S. P. Gupta v. UOI AIR 1982 SC 149, it has been held that, a fixed tenure unaffected by the discretion of the executive safeguards the principle of judicial independence and the independence of the judiciary depends to a great extent on the security of tenure of the Judges. If the Judge’s tenure is uncertain or precarious, it will be difficult for him to perform the duties of his office without fear or favour.

(b) In the case of Rojer Mathew v. South Indian Bank Ltd. and Ors. 2019 (369) ELT 3 (SC) the Court observed that tenures also discourage meritorious members of Bar to sacrifice their flourishing practice to join a Tribunal as a Member for a short tenure of merely three years. The tenure of Members of Tribunals as prescribed under the Schedule of the Rules is anti-merit and attempts to create equality between unequals. A tenure of three years may be suitable for a retired Judge of the Hon’ble High Court or the Hon’ble Supreme Court or even in case of a judicial officer on deputation. However, it will be illusory to expect a practising advocate to forego his well-established practice to serve as a Member of a Tribunal for a period of three years.

(c) Malimath Committee on Functioning of Tribunals observed that:

“8.63 Several tribunals are functioning in the country. Not all of them, however, have inspired confidence in the public mind. The reasons are not far to seek. The foremost is the lack of competence, objectivity and judicial approach. The next is their constitution, the power and method of appointment of personnel thereto, the inferior status and the casual method of working. The last is their actual composition; men of calibre are not willing to be appointed as presiding officers in view of the uncertainty of tenure, unsatisfactory conditions of service, executive subordination in matters of administration and political interference in judicial functioning. For these and other reasons, the quality of justice is stated to have suffered and the cause of expedition is not found to have been served by the establishment of such tribunals.”

(d) 74th Parliamentary Standing Committee Report

“21. Committee also dwelt upon at length on the need of making regular appointments in the Tribunals in place of tenure appointments. The Committee noted that system of regular appointment is in existence in Income Tax Appellate Tribunal, Customs Excise and Service Tax Appellate Tribunal. It was felt that such appointments may be needed to make Tribunals more vibrant and to facilitate induction of young and talented experts and judicial officers with a reasonable length of experience in the related field. The tenure posting appears to be less attractive to the Advocates and other professionals.”

(e) As per Article 217(2)(b) of the Constitution of India, a person who has been an advocate of a High Court or of two or more such Courts in succession for more than 10 years of practice, is eligible for being appointed as a judge of a High Court. However, a person is qualified for appointment as a Judicial Member of the ITAT if he has been an Advocate for 25 years and for Accountant Member for more than 25 years of practice. Such a provision is manifestly arbitrary and irrational and hence is violative of Article 14 of the Constitution of India.

(f) Functioning of the ITAT cannot be compared with other Tribunals for e.g. The Electricity Tribunal. The Income tax Act, 1961 refers more than 98 Central Acts and various State legislations hence to decide the issues relating to taxation of law and facts it requires in depth knowledge of direct tax law, general law and accountancy. A Division Bench of ITAT consists of Judicial and Accountant member. One may have to consider the situation when all present members retire there will not be any experienced members, rather only members having less than four years of experience to decide the taxation issues wherein crores of tax payable is at stake, Further, given a tenure of only four years, can a member appointed under the Rules, 2020 be capable of deciding fairly without any fear.

(g) In the case of UOI v. Sankalchand Himatlal Sheth & Ors. (1977) 4 SCC 193 the Court held that even with regard to the Subordinate Judiciary the framers of the Constitution were anxious to secure that it should be insulated from executive interference and once appointment of a Judicial Officer is made, his subsequent career should be under the control of the High Court and he should not be exposed to the possibility of any improper executive pressure.

(h) In the case of UOI v. R. Gandhi & Ors. (2010) 11 SCC 1, it was held that impartiality, independence, fairness and reasonableness in decision making are the hallmarks of Judiciary. If ₹Impartiality’ is the soul of Judiciary, then ₹Independence’ is the life blood of Judiciary. Without independence, impartiality cannot thrive. Independence is not the freedom for Judges to do what they like. It is the independence of judicial thought. It is the freedom from interference and pressures which provides the judicial atmosphere where he can work with absolute commitment to the cause of justice and constitutional values.

(i) In the case of Supreme Court Advocates on Record Association & Ors. v. UOI (2016) 5 SCC 1, it was held that the most essential safeguards to ensure the independence of the judiciary-Certainty of tenure and a Judge would be absolutely independent and fearless in discharge of his duties.

(j) In the case of Bar Association v. Union of India (2014) 10 SCC 1 the Honourable Court dealing with the validity of Section 8 of the National Tax Tribunal Act, 2005 (‘NTT Act’) observed that a Chairperson/Member is appointed to the NTT, in the first instance, for a duration of 5 years. Such Chairperson/Member is eligible for reappointment, for a further period of 5 years which will have the effect of undermining the independence of the Chairperson/Members of the NTT. Every Chairperson/Member appointed to the NTT, would be constrained to decide matters, in a manner that would ensure his reappointment in terms of Section 8 of the NTT Act. His decisions may or may not be based on his independent understanding.

(k) The 272nd Law Commission Report titled “Assessment of Statutory Frameworks of Tribunals in India”. Referring to the provisions of section 6(2)(b) of the Central Administrative Tribunal Act, 1985, observed that as regards question of reappointment observed that if an advocate is appointed on tenure basis of five years and reappointed another five years and after 10 years it may be difficult to a lawyer to establish the practice once again hence it is desired that he may be allowed to continue till the age of superannuation.

(l) As per the present rules of the members of the ITAT, when a person is appointed as permanent member of the ITAT, though he resigns or retires on superannuation he is not allowed to practice before the ITAT anywhere in India. However, under the new Rules, when a person is appointed as an judicial member, say at the age of 55, he would be appointed for a tenure of four years, virtually bringing an end to his professional career at the age of 59. Further, during his tenure, he would be posted in place other than the place where he is practiced, it is very difficult to rebuild the practice, in a different subject as he cannot appear before the ITAT. Further, he may not be eligible for pensions or medical facilities, his chances of being elevated to High court is very remote, hence the professionals with reasonable practice may not apply for the post of judicial or accountant member.

There could be number of legal arguments which are against the proposed the 2020 Appointment Rules. All those who are concerned with independency of the Appellate Tribunal are requested to send their objective suggestions to preserve the independency of the Institution. Suggestions may be sent to [email protected]

Dr. K Shivaram
Chairman, Editorial Board

1. I am following cash system of accounting. I collect GST amount in bill and keep separate account of GST collection as and when I receive, but pay as per bill after deducting ITC as and when paid by me. The issue is whether section 43B applies to tax collection and kept separately? If yes, then is it to apply as per bill or receipt? The claim of ITC in return but not paid during the year – should it be offered as income?

Ans. Section 43B would apply to GST payments. As per section 145A(ii), for determining income chargeable under the head “Profits and gains of Business or Profession”, the valuation of sale of goods or services shall be adjusted to include the amount of any tax, duty, cess or fee actually paid or incurred by the assessee to bring the goods or services to the place of its location and condition as on the date of valuation. The sales would therefore have to be grossed up to include GST collected on the sales. GST would be allowable as an expense as and when paid. GST payable would be net of ITC, and hence such net amount of GST would be deductible, effectively making the ITC actually claimed in the GST return taxable.

2. I have a long term capital loss of  2.25 lakh (computed without indexation or substitution of FMV as of 1-2-2018) on sale of listed equity shares on the stock exchange, and also have a long term capital gain of  18 lakh (computed with indexation of cost). Can I set off the loss on sale of shares against the gain on sale of property?

Ans. Any long term capital loss computed under sections 48 to 55 can be set off against any other long term capital gain arrived at under a similar computation under the provisions of section 70(3). However, the question that arises is whether the computation of long term capital loss, being without indexation, is a similar computation as the long term capital gain on sale of property, which is with indexation of cost.

The CBDT has clarified, vide its answer to Q No 24 of the FAQs issued by it under F. No. 370149/20/2018-TPL dated 4th February 2018, that long-term capital loss arising from transfer of shares, on which STT has been paid, made on or after 1st April, 2018 will be allowed to be set-off and carried forward in accordance with existing provisions of the Act, and therefore, can be set-off against any other long-term capital gains. Therefore, the long term loss on sale of shares can be set off against long term capital gains on sale of property.

3. I have paid a construction contractor  45 lakh towards contract for construction of my house during the period from 1st April 2019 to 31st August 2019. I am paying further amounts of  30 lakh from September 2019 to March 2020. Am I required to deduct TDS under section 194M, and on what amount?

Ans. The provisions of section 194M came into effect from 1st September 2019, and therefore tax is required to be deducted at source from payments made after that date. The proviso to section 194M states that no deduction is required to be made under this section if the aggregate of such sums credited or paid during a financial year does not exceed ₹ 50 lakh. Therefore, the total of all payments/credits during a year is required to be seen to understand whether deduction is required.

In the facts as given, tax will be required to be deducted on ₹ 30 lakh, being the payments made after the section came into force, since the payments for the year exceed ₹ 50 lakh. No tax is required to be deducted on ₹ 45 lakh, since those payments were made prior to the section coming into force.

4. Some companies provide incentives to their dealers in the form of

a. gift of vehicle/tv etc.

b. gift cheque

c. foreign travel vouchers.

What will be the position of taxability of such incentives in the hands of recipient as well as allowability to the company? Will it make any difference if it is given in the form of a prize?

Some companies arrange business meetings/conference of dealers in foreign countries, where the dealers are given travel coupons of various travel companies for family. What are the implications?

Ans. The above gifts of vehicle, TV, foreign travel voucher or travel coupons for family members of the dealer would be regarded as benefits or perquisites arising from business carried on by the dealers, and would be taxable under section 28(iv). Section 28(iv) however only applies to benefits or perquisites received in kind, and does not apply to receipts of money, as held by the Supreme Court in the case of CIT vs. Mahindra & Mahindra Ltd 404 ITR 1. The gift cheque, being a receipt of money, would not be taxable under section 28(iv), but would nevertheless be a taxable business receipt. It would not make any difference if the above items are given as prizes.

1. CGST Act Amendments

a. The definition of “Union territory” has been amended to update the definition of “Union territory” to include U.T. of Ladakh and newly merged U.T. of Dadra and Nagar Haveli and Daman and Diu.

b. Section 10 has been amended, to exclude certain categories of taxable persons from the ambit of the Composition Scheme, who are engaged in exempted or inter- state supply of services or supply of services through an E-Commerce Operator.

c. Due date for claiming ITC on Debit Note as per Section 16(4) is no more linked to date of its original invoice, and now date of debit note is to be seen for claiming ITC.

d. Section 29(1)(c) has been amended to provide for cancellation of registration which has been obtained voluntarily under section 25(3)

e. Section 30(1) Proviso is being substituted to provide for additional 30 days for filing application for revocation of Cancellation of Registration, in deserving cases by Additional Commissioner or Joint Commissioner and another 30 days by Commissioner.

f. Section 31 is has been to provide enabling provision to prescribe the manner of issuance of Tax invoices in case of services or supplies.

g. Section 51 has been amended to provide for issuance of TDS Certificate in a prescribed form and in a prescribed manner. The Provision for late fees has been deleted.

h. Section 109 has been amended to bring the provision for Appellate Tribunal under the CGST Act in the Union Territory of Jammu and Kashmir and Ladakh.

i. Section 122 has been amended by inserting a new sub-section to make the beneficiary of the transactions of passing on or availing fraudulent Input Tax Credit liable for penalty similar to the penalty leviable on the person who commits such specified offences.

j. Section 132 has been amended to make the offence of fraudulent availment of input tax credit without an invoice or bill a cognizable and non-bailable offence; and to make any person who commits, or causes the commission, or retains the benefit of transactions arising out of specified offences liable for punishment.

k. Section 140 has been amended w.r.e.f. 1.July 2017, to prescribe the manner and time limit for taking transitional credit.

l. Section 168 has been amended to remove power of Commissioner to give instructions and directions as per Section 66(5) and second proviso to Section 143(1).

m. Section 172 has been amended to make provision for enabling issuance of removal of difficulties order for another 2 years, i.e. till 5 years from the date of commencement of the said Act.

n. Entries at 4(a) & 4(b) in Schedule II is being amended w.r.e.f. 1st July 2017 to make provision for omission of supplies relating to transfer of business assets made without any consideration from Schedule II of the said Act..

2. IGST Act Amendments

a. Section 25 has been amended to make provision for enabling the issuance of removal of difficulties orders for another 2 years, i.e. till 5 years from the date of commencement of the said Act.

3. Changes in Tax Rate

a. Exemption from GST for fishmeal [HS 2301], for the period 1st July 2017 to 30th September 2019, and Levy of 12% rate of Tax during the period 1st July 2017 to 31st December 2018, on pulley, wheels and other parts (falling under heading 8483) and used as parts of agricultural machinery of headings 8432, 8433, and 8436, subject to the condition that if GST has been paid, the same would not be eligible for refund.

b. Notification No. 3/2019-Compensation Cess (Rate) dated 30 September 2019 amended with retrospective effect from 01.07.2017 resulting in no refund on account of inverted duty structure would be admissible on any tobacco products.

4. Changes in Customs Duty Rate

a. Increase in BCD of import of footwear, Kitchen-ware, Glass-ware and household appliances, furniture goods and compressor of refrigerator and A/C, water cooler, catalytic convertor, Chargers and power adaptors, SKD form electrical vehicles and import of rough semi precious stones, Rubies, Emeralds and Tuna bait (fish), whey, butter, ghee, butter oil, walnuts, shelled, meslin, molasses, preparation for infant use, preserved potatoes, peanut butter, sacramental wine, fin fish feed

b. Exemption from BCD to Milk and cream (in powder or granules or any sold forms) up to 10,000 metrics tons of such imports in financial year

c. Changes in rate of BCD for raw sugar, Naphtha for generation of electrical energy, Japanese Encephalitis vaccine, Parts of Cellular Mobile phones

d. Reduction in BCD for import of newsprint, uncoated paper, platinum or palladium

5. Central Excise – Amendments

a. Increase in Excise duty on Cigarettes and tobacco products, by way of increase in National Calamity Contingent Duty (NCCD)

b. No change in rate of duty for Bidis

c. Increase in Excise duty on Petroleum crudes

This is a Small Compilation giving the amendments in brief. It is for reference purpose only.

 

Budget 2020: Exemption Under Section 11 and Section 10(23C) and Approval Under Section 80G for Charitable / Religious Etc. Trusts, Institutions Etc. – An Analysis of Proposed Amendments

Introduction: The Finance Bill, 2020 has proposed to make substantial changes regarding provisions for granting exemptions to the charitable / religious trusts, institutions etc. U/s. 11 of the Income Tax Act, 1961 (“Act”). The substantial amendments are also proposed in respect of exemption U/s. 10(23C) which are granted to the trusts, institutions, universities, educational institutions, hospitals, other medical institutions etc. The amendments are also proposed in respect of approval of funds, institutions etc. (donations to which are eligible for deduction to the donor) under section 80G.

Under the new regime, the amendments are proposed in section 10(23C), section 11, section 12A, section 12AA and section 80G. A new section 12AB is also proposed to be introduced. All these amendments are proposed to be made w.e.f. 01st June, 2020.

In this article an attempt has been made to have an overview of the proposed changes.

1. New Provisions / Procedure For Registration / Approval

The registration to the charitable / religious trust, institutions etc. is presently given u/s. 12AA of the Income Tax Act (“Act”). Now, w.e.f. 01st June, 2020 it is proposed to make this section ineffective and to give registration under new section 12AB.

For institutions etc. approved under clauses (iv), (v), (vi) and (via) of section 10(23C) and section 80G, new provisions / procedure for approval has been proposed, but the same is by way of proposed amendments respectively in the section 10(23C) and section 80G themselves.

2. New Registration / Approval for Limited Period of 5 Years only

Presently, the registration U/s. 12AA and approval U/s. 10(23C), 80G are given without any expiry period (though may be cancelled in specific circumstances). Now, under new provisions these are proposed to be given only for the limited period of 5 years (without any discretion in the hands of the authorities for any period less than 5 years etc.). On expiry of the aforesaid period the registration / approval may be re obtained.

3. Classification of Applicants for Registration / Approval in Four Categories

The proposed amendments classifies the cases of applicants for approval / registration in to four category i.e.,

(i) Already registered / approved under the existing law

(ii) Those whose registration / approval under new law is expired in 5 years

(iii) Those who have been given provisional registration under new law (for 3 years) and

(iv) Any other cases i.e., obviously fresh registration / approval applicants under new law. All applications under old law which will be pending as on the date of coming in to force of the amendment will be treated as fresh applications filed under the new law.

The relevant extract from Memorandum Explaining Clauses are as under:-

(vii) the application pending for approval, registration, as the case may be, shall be treated as application in accordance with the new provisions, wherever they are being provided for.”

4. Existing Registered / Approved Entities also Required to Re Obtain Registration / Approval

These cases are dealt with in clause 7(1)(A)(a) & clause 10(1)(A) & clause 33(i)(b) and other related clauses of Finance Bill. The sub clause (i) of clause (ac) of sub section (1) of amended section 12A and clause (i) of first proviso to amended section 10(23C) & clause (i) of proviso to sub section (5) of section 80G are relevant. The institutions etc. which are already registered under existing section 12AA or earlier section 12A / approved under existing provisions of section 10(23C) or section 80G will also be required to obtain fresh registration / approval under new section 12AB / amended section 10(23C) / amended section 80G.

The application for re obtaining the approval / registration will have to be given within the period of three months from the date of coming in to force of the amendment. On receipt of the application, the PCIT / CIT will pass an order for registration / approval for the period of 5 years. The new approval / registration will be applicable from the assessment year from which the approval / registration was originally granted under the existing provisions. The order for registration / approval in such cases will be required to be passed within 3 months from the end of the month in which the application will be filed.

5. Relevant extract from Memorandum Explaining Clauses

The relevant extract explaining the intention behind the amendment and scope of amendment is as under :

It is also felt that the approval or registration or notification for exemption should also be for a limited period, say for a period not exceeding five years at one time, which would act as check to ensure that the conditions of approval or registration or notification are adhered to for want of continuance of exemption. This would in fact also be a reason for having a non-adversarial regime and not conducting roving inquiry in the affairs of the exempt entities on day to day basis, in general, as in any case they would be revisiting the concerned authorities for new registration before expiry of the period of exemption. This new process needs to be provided for both existing and new exempt entities. (Emphasis supplied by us)”

(iii) an entity approved, registered or notified under clause (23C) of section 10, section 12AA or section 35 of the Act, as the case may be, shall be required to apply for approval or registration or intimate regarding it being approved, as the case may be, and on doing so, the approval, registration or notification in respect of the entity shall be valid for a period not exceeding five previous years at one time calculated from 1st April, 2020.”

(iv) an entity already approved under section 80G shall also be required to apply for approval and on doing so, the approval, registration or notification in respect of the entity shall be valid for a period not exceeding five years at one time.”

6. Renewal of Registration /Approval After Expiry of 5 Years

The application for re obtaining the registration / approval will have to be given at least 6 months prior to the expiry of the registration / approval. The PCIT / CIT will have to make the necessary enquiries and to pass order for granting or rejecting the registration / approval. The order for registration / approval is required to be passed within 6 months from the end of the month in which the application is filed. The renewed registration / approval will be applicable from assessment year immediately following the financial year in which such application is made.

The author personally feels that the applicability of renewed approval / registration has been associated with the financial year in which the application has been made. This may create some practical problems. For example, if registration is given from assessment year 2021-22 to 2025-26 (i.e., financial year 2024-25), the registration will expire on 31st March, 2025. Now, the application for renewal will have to be made in financial year 2024-25 itself. The fresh registration will have to be granted from the assessment year 2025-26 for which the institution will be already registered / approved.

7. New Provisions for Provisional Registration / Approval

Under the existing provisions, there were no provisions relating to the provisional registration / approval. Either the application is rejected or accepted and full / final registration is granted. Now the amendments proposes to give the approval U/s. 10(23C), 80G / registration U/s. 12AB on provisional basis. The provisional approval may be granted for the period of 3 years (without any discretion in the hands of the authorities for any period less than 3 years etc.). The first time fresh applicants will not be directly given full / final registration but will be granted only provisional approval / registration. Later on, full / final registration / approval may be granted following the prescribed procedure.

8. Procedure for Fresh First Time Applicants

The proposed provisions regarding first time applicants are contained in clause 7(1)(A)(a) and clause 10(1)(A) & clause 33(i)(b) and other related clauses of Finance Bill. These are covered in “any other cases” mentioned in the amended provisions. The sub clause (vi) of clause (ac) of sub section (1) of amended section 12A and clause (iv) of first proviso to amended section 10(23C) and clause (iv) of proviso to sub section 5 of section 80G are relevant.

The application for fresh registration / approval is to be made at least one month prior to the commencement of the previous year relevant to the assessment year from which said approval / registration is sought. For example, if the exemption is sought for the income from financial year 2021-22 the application will have to be made at least one month before 1st April, 2021 i.e., in March 2021 or prior.

In case of fresh first time applicants, the PCIT / CIT is required to give provisional approval / registration for three years and to send the copy of order to the applicant. No requirement for any detailed enquiry etc. is mentioned like in other cases of approval / registration. The requirement for detailed enquiry has been mentioned only regarding application for full / final registration / approval to provisionally registered / approved entity. The provisional registration is to be given from the assessment year from which the registration was sought. The order for registration / approval in such cases will be required to be passed within a months from the end of the month in which the application will be filed.

9. Procedure for Conversion of Provisional Registration To Full / Final Registration

These cases are dealt with in clause 7(1)(A)(a) and clause 10(1)(A) & clause 33(i)(b) and other related clauses of the Finance Bill. The provisionally registered institutions etc. will have to apply for full / final approval at least 6 months prior to the expiry of the provisional registration or within 6 months of commencement of activities which is earlier. In case the final approval / registration is granted the same will be from the assessment year from which the provisional approval / registration was granted. The order for registration / approval in such cases will be required to be passed within 6 months from the end of the month in which the application will be filed.

The “commencement / non commencement of activities” has remained a disputed basis for rejection of application for registration / approval under the existing law. Therefore, it appears that under the new law, the genuine institution may not be rejected approval / registration (though provisional) for want of commencement of activities.

The relevant extract from the Memorandum Explaining Clauses are as under :

(vi) an entity making fresh application for approval under clause (23C) of section 10, for registration under section 12AA, for approval under section 80G shall be provisionally approved or registered for three years on the basis of application without detailed enquiry even in the cases where activities of the entity are yet to begin and then it has to apply again for approval or registration which, if granted, shall be valid from the date of such provisional registration. The application of registration subsequent to provisional registration should be at least six months prior to expiry of provisional registration or within six months of start of activities, whichever is earlier.”

10. Fresh Registration / Approval to be Applied Much Earlier

Under the existing provisions, the application for registration U/s. 12AA can be made at any time during the financial year from which the exemption is required. For example, if the exemption is required from the income of financial year 2018-19, the application could have been made at any time between 01st April, 2018 to 31st March, 2019, even on the last day of the financial year i.e., on 31st March, 2019. In case the registration is granted the same will be applicable to the income of the whole financial year 2018-19.

Similarly, for getting approval for exemption U/s. 10(23C) in respect of income from any financial year, the application is to be made at any time before the 30th September next from the end of the financial year i.e., for exemption of income from the financial year 2018-19, the application had to be made at any time up to 30th September, 2019.

Now, under the proposed provisions, the fresh applicants (first time applicants) will have to make application for registration / approval much earlier i.e., at least one month prior to the commencement of the financial year from which exemption is required. The approval / registration will be granted from such financial year.

(Note : it appears that there is some drafting error in the proposed amendment. The language used for prescribing time limit for making application is “(iv) in any other case, at least one month prior to the commencement of the previous year relevant to the assessment year from which the said approval is sought, “. The language used for grant of registration is “(iii) in any other case, from the assessment year immediately following the financial year in which such application is made:” (emphasis supplied by us) For example it the registration / approval is sought for the financial year 2021-22 (assessment year 2022-23) then application will have to be made in the financial year 2020-21. Now, registration will be granted from the assessment year following the financial year in which the application is made i.e., in this case from the assessment year 2021-22 or financial year 2020-21 whereas the application has been made from the financial year 2021-22 (assessment year 2022-23).

11. Simultaneous Registration for Exemption under Section 11 etc and Approval For Section 10(23C) Exemption Now Not Permissible

The proposed amendment to section 11 provides that if the institution is registered for exemption U/s. 11 etc. as well as approved U/s. 10(23C) / notified U/s. 10(46) then the above registration shall became inoperative from the date of coming in to force of the amendment. If in future, an institution which is registered U/s. 12AA / 12AB also gets approval U/s. 10(23C) or become notified U/s. 10(46) after amendment, then also in such case the registration U/s. 12AA / 12AB shall became inoperative from the date of such approval / notification.

The proposed amendments gives an option to the institution to get its registration u/s. 12AA / 12AB operative by making application for that. However, in such circumstances he will not be entitled to get benefit of section 10(23C) approval / 10(46) notification. The procedure for making registration operative again is given in the amended provisions.

The crux of the above amendment is that at a time an institution can take benefit of either section 12AA / 12AB or of section 10(23C) and 10(46).

12. Due Date of Filing of Income Tax Return Extended To 31st October

The due date for filing of the Income Tax Return for such institutions have also been extended to 31st October from 30th September.

13. Other Relevant Amendments

(1) Similar amendments are proposed in respect of institutions approved U/s. 35.

(2) Deduction under section 80G/ 80GGA to a donor shall be allowed only if a statement is furnished by the donee who shall be required to furnish a statement in respect of donations received and in the event of failure to do so, fee and penalty shall be levied.

(3) Similar to section 80G of the Act, deduction of cash donation under section 80GGA shall be restricted to Rs 2,000/- only.

14. Relevant Clauses of Finance Bill

These are mentioned hereunder for ready reference :

i. Amendment of section 10

7. In section 10 of the Income-tax Act,–

(I) in clause (23C),–

(A) with effect from the 1st day of June, 2020,–

(a) for the first and second provisos, the following provisos shall be substituted, namely:–

Provided that the exemption to the fund or trust or institution or university or other educational institution or hospital or other medical institution referred to in sub-clause (iv) or sub-clause (v) or sub-clause (vi) or sub-clause (via)under the respective sub-clauses shall not be available to it unless such fund or trust or institution or university or other educational institution or hospital or other medical institution makes an application in the prescribed form and manner to the Principal Commissioner or Commissioner, for grant of approval,–

(i) where such fund or trust or institution or university or other educational institution or hospital or other medical institution is approved under the second proviso [as it stood immediately before its amendment by the Finance Act, 2020], within three months from the date on which this clause has come into force;

(ii) where such fund or trust or institution or university or other educational institution or hospital or other medical institution is approved and the period of such approval is due to expire, at least six months prior to expiry of the said period;

(iii) where such fund or trust or institution or university or other educational institution or hospital or other medical institution has been provisionally approved, at least six months prior to expiry of the period of the provisional approval or within six months of commencement of its activities, whichever is earlier;

(iv) in any other case, at least one month prior to the commencement of the previous year relevant to the assessment year from which the said approval is sought, and the said fund or trust or institution or university or other educational institution or hospital or other medical institution is approved under the second proviso:

Provided further that the Principal Commissioner or Commissioner, on receipt of an application made under the first proviso, shall,—

(i) where the application is made under clause (i) of the said proviso, pass an order in writing granting approval to it for a period of five years;

(ii) where the application is made under clause (ii) or clause (iii) of the said proviso,–

(a) call for such documents or information from it or make such inquiries as he thinks necessary in order to satisfy himself about—

(A) the genuineness of activities of such fund or trust or institution or university or other educational institution or hospital or other medical institution; and

(B) the compliance of such requirements of any other law for the time being in force by it as are material for the purpose of achieving its objects; and

(b) after satisfying himself about the objects and the genuineness of its activities under item (A), and compliance of the requirements under item (B), of sub-clause (a),–

(A) pass an order in writing granting approval to it for a period of five years;

(B) if he is not so satisfied, pass an order in writing rejecting such application and also cancelling its approval after affording it a reasonable opportunity of being heard;

(iii) where the application is made under clause (iv) of the said proviso, pass an order in writing granting approval to it provisionally for a period of three years from the assessment year from which the registration is sought, and send a copy of such order to the fund or trust or institution or university or other educational institution or hospital or other medical institution:”;

(b) for the eighth and ninth provisos, the following provisos shall be substituted, namely:–

Provided also that any approval granted under the second proviso shall apply in relation to the income of the fund or trust or institution or university or other educational institution or hospital or other medical institution,–

(i) where the application is made under clause (i) of the first proviso, from the assessment year from which approval was earlier granted to it;

(ii) where the application is made under clause (iii) of the first proviso, from the first of the assessment years for which it was provisionally approved;

(iii) in any other case, from the assessment year immediately following the financial year in which such application is made:

Provided also that the order under clause (i), sub-clause (b) of clause (ii)and clause (iii) of the second proviso shall be passed, in such form and manner as may be prescribed, before expiry of the period of three months, six months and one month, respectively, calculated from the end of the month in which the application was received:”;

(B) in the tenth proviso, for the words and figures “section 288 and furnish along with the return of income for the relevant assessment year”, the words, figures and letters “section 288 before the specified date referred to in section 44AB and furnish by that date” shall be substituted;

(C) with effect from the 1st day of June, 2020,–

(a) the sixteenth proviso shall be omitted;

(b) for the eighteenth proviso, the following proviso shall be substituted, namely:–

Provided also that all applications made under the first proviso [as it stood before its amendment by the Finance Act, 2020] pending before the Principal Commissioner or Commissioner, on which no order has been passed before the date on which the first proviso has come into force, shall be deemed to be an application made under clause (iv) of the first proviso on that date:”;

ii. Amendment of section 11

9. In section 11 of the Income-tax Act, in sub-section (7), with effect from the 1st day of June, 2020,–

(a) for the words, brackets, letters and figures “under clause (b) of sub-section (1) of section 12AA”, the words, figures and letters “under section 12AA or section 12AB” shall be substituted;

(b) for the words, brackets, figures and letter “clause (1) and clause (23C)”, the words, brackets, figures and letter “clause (1), clause (23C) and clause (46)” shall be substituted;

(c) the following provisos shall be inserted, namely:–

“Provided that such registration shall become inoperative from the date on which the trust or institution is approved under clause (23C) of section 10 or is notified under clause (46) of the said section, as the case may be, or the date on which this proviso has come into force, whichever is later:

Provided further that the trust or institution, whose registration has become inoperative under the first proviso, may apply to get its registration operative under section 12AB subject to the condition that on doing so, the approval under clause (23C) of section 10 or notification under clause (46) of the said section, as the case may be, to such trust or institution shall cease to have any effect from the date on which the said registration becomes operative and thereafter, it shall not be entitled to exemption under the respective clauses.”.

iii. Amendment of section 12A

10. In section 12A of the Income-tax Act,–

(I) in sub-section (1),–

(A) after clause (ab), the following clause shall be inserted with effect from the 1st day of June, 2020, namely:–

“(ac) notwithstanding anything contained in clauses (a) to (ab), the person in receipt of the income has made an application in the prescribed form and manner to the Principal Commissioner or Commissioner, for registration of the trust or institution,–

(i) where the trust or institution is registered under section 12A [as it stood immediately before its amendment by the Finance (No. 2) Act, 1996] or under section 12AA, [as it stood immediately before its amendment by the Finance Act, 2020] within three months from the date on which this clause has come into force;

(ii) where the trust or institution is registered under section 12AB and the period of the said registration is due to expire, at least six months prior to expiry of the said period;

(iii) where the trust or institution has been provisionally registered under section 12AB, at least six months prior to expiry of period of the provisional registration or within six months of commencement of its activities, whichever is earlier;

(iv) where registration of the trust or institution has become inoperative due to the first proviso to sub-section (7) of section 11, at least six months prior to the commencement of the assessment year from which the said registration is sought to be made operative;

(v) where the trust or institution has adopted or undertaken modifications of the objects which do not conform to the conditions of registration, within a period of thirty days from the date of the said adoption or modification;

(vi) in any other case, at least one month prior to the commencement of the previous year relevant to the assessment year from which the said registration is sought, and such trust or institution is registered under section 12AB;”;

(B) in clause (b), for the words “and the person in receipt of the income furnishes along with the return of income for the relevant assessment year”, the words, figures and letters “before the specified date referred to in section 44AB and the person in receipt of the income furnishes by that date” shall be substituted;

(II) in sub-section (2), with effect from the 1st day of June, 2020,–

(A) in the first proviso, for the words “Provided that”, the following shall be substituted, namely:–

“Provided that the provisions of sections 11 and 12 shall apply to a trust or institution, where the application is made under–

(a) sub-clause (i) of clause (ac) of sub-section (1), from the assessment year from which such trust or institution was earlier granted registration;

(b) sub-clause (iii) of clause (ac) of sub-section (1), from the first of the assessment years for which it was provisionally registered:

Provided further that”;

(B) in the second proviso, for the words “Provided further”, the words “Provided also” shall be substituted;

(C) in the first and third provisos, after the word, figures and letters “section 12AA”, the words, figures and letters “or section 12AB” shall be inserted.

iv. Amendment of section 12AA

11. In section 12AA of the Income-tax Act, after sub-section (4), the following sub-section shall be inserted with effect from the 1st day of June, 2020, namely:–

“(5) Nothing contained in this section shall apply on or after the 1st day of June, 2020.”.

v. Insertion of new section 12AB

12. After section 12AA of the Income-tax Act, the following section shall be inserted with effect from the 1st day of June, 2020, namely:–

“12AB. (1) The Principal Commissioner or Commissioner, on receipt of an application made under clause (ac) of sub-section (1) of section 12A, shall,—

(a) where the application is made under sub-clause (i) of the said clause, pass an order in writing registering the trust or institution for a period of five years;

(b) where the application is made under sub-clause (ii) or sub-clause (iii) or sub-clause (iv) or sub-clause (v) of the said clause,–

(i) call for such documents or information from the trust or institution or make such inquiries as he thinks necessary in order to satisfy himself about—

(A) the genuineness of activities of the trust or institution; and

(B) the compliance of such requirements of any other law for the time being in force by the trust or institution as are material for the purpose of achieving its objects; and

(ii) after satisfying himself about the objects of the trust or institution and the genuineness of its activities under item (A), and compliance of the requirements under item (B), of sub-clause (i),–

(A) pass an order in writing registering the trust or institution for a period of five years;

(B) if he is not so satisfied, pass an order in writing rejecting such application and also cancelling its registration after affording a reasonable opportunity of being heard;

(c) where the application is made under sub-clause (vi) of the said clause, pass an order in writing provisionally registering the trust or institution for a period of three years from the assessment year from which the registration is sought, and send a copy of such order to the trust or institution.

(2) All applications, pending before the Principal Commissioner or Commissioner on which no order has been passed under clause (b) of sub-section (1) of section 12AA before the date on which this section has come into force, shall be deemed to be an application made under sub-clause (vi) of clause (ac) of sub-section (1) of section 12A on that date.

(3) The order under clause (a), sub-clause (ii) of clause (b) and clause (c), of sub-section (1) shall be passed, in such form and manner as may be prescribed, before expiry of the period of three months, six months and one month, respectively, calculated from the end of the month in which the application was received.

(4) Where registration of a trust or an institution has been granted under clause (a) or clause (b) of sub-section (1) and subsequently, the Principal Commissioner or Commissioner is satisfied that the activities of such trust or institution are not genuine or are not being carried out in accordance with the objects of the trust or institution, as the case may be, he shall pass an order in writing cancelling the registration of such trust or institution after affording a reasonable opportunity of being heard.

(5) Without prejudice to the provisions of sub-section (4), where registration of a trust or an institution has been granted under clause (a) or clause (b) of sub-section (1) and subsequently, it is noticed that–

(a) the activities of the trust or the institution are being carried out in a manner that the provisions of sections 11 and 12 do not apply to exclude either whole or any part of the income of such trust or institution due to operation of sub-section (1) of section 13; or

(b) the trust or institution has not complied with the requirement of any other law, as referred to in item (B) of sub-clause (i) of clause (b) of sub-section (1), and the order, direction or decree, by whatever name called, holding that such non-compliance has occurred, has either not been disputed or has attained finality, then, the Principal Commissioner or the Commissioner may, by an order in writing, after affording a reasonable opportunity of being heard, cancel the registration of such trust or institution.”

vi. Amendment of Section 80G

“(viii) the institution or fund prepares such statement for such period as may be prescribed and deliver or cause to be delivered to the prescribed income-tax authority or the person authorized by such authority such statement in such form and verified in such manner and setting forth such particulars and within such time as may be prescribed:

Provided that the institution or fund may also deliver to the said prescribed authority a correction statement for rectification of any mistake or to add, delete or update the information furnished in the statement delivered under this sub-section in such form and verified in such manner as may be prescribed; and

(ix) the institution or fund furnishes to the donor, a certificate specifying the amount of donation in such manner, containing such particulars and within such time from the date of receipt of donation, as may be prescribed:

Provided that the institution or fund referred to in clause (vi) shall make an application in the prescribed form and manner to the Principal Commissioner or Commissioner, for grant of approval,–

(i) where the institution or fund is approved under clause (vi) [as it stood immediately before its amendment by the Finance Act, 2020], within three months from the date on which this proviso has come into force;

(ii) where the institution or fund is approved and the period of such approval is due to expire, at least six months prior to expiry of the said period;

(iii) where the institution or fund has been provisionally approved, at least six months prior to expiry of the period of the provisional approval or within six months of commencement of its activities, whichever is earlier;

(iv) in any other case, at least one month prior to commencement of the previous year relevant to the assessment year from which the said approval is sought:

Provided further that the Principal Commissioner or Commissioner, on receipt of an application made under the first proviso, shall,—

(i) where the application is made under clause (i) of the said proviso, pass an order in writing granting it approval for a period of five years;

(ii) where the application is made under clause (ii) or clause (iii) of the said proviso,–

(a) call for such documents or information from it or make such inquiries as he thinks necessary in order to satisfy himself about—

(A) the genuineness of activities of such institution or fund; and

(B) the fulfilment of all the conditions laid down in clauses (i) to (v); and

(b) after satisfying himself about the genuineness of activities under item (A), and the fulfilment of all the conditions under item (B), of sub-clause (a),–

(A) pass an order in writing granting it approval for a period of five years;

(B) if he is not so satisfied, pass an order in writing rejecting such application and also cancelling its approval after affording it a reasonable opportunity of being heard;

(iii) where the application is made under clause (iv) of the said proviso, pass an order in writing granting it approval provisionally for a period of three years from the assessment year from which the registration is sought, and send a copy of such order to the institution or fund:

Provided also that the order under clause (i), sub-clause (b) of clause (ii) and clause (iii) of the first proviso shall be passed in such form and manner as may be prescribed, before expiry of the period of three months, six months and one month, respectively, calculated from the end of the month in which the application was received:

Provided also that the approval granted under the second proviso shall apply to an institution or fund, where the application is made under–

(a) clause (i) of the first proviso, from the assessment year from which approval was earlier granted to such institution or fund;

(b) clause (iii) of the first proviso, from the first of the assessment years for which such institution or fund was provisionally approved;

(c) in any other case, from the assessment year immediately following the financial year in which such application is made.”;

(ii) in sub-section (5D), after Explanation 2, the following Explanation shall be inserted, namely:–

“Explanation 2A.— For the removal of doubts, it is hereby declared that claim of the assessee for a deduction in respect of any donation made to an institution or fund to which the provisions of sub-section (5) applies, in the return of income for any assessment year filed by him, shall be allowed on the basis of information relating to said donation furnished by the institution or fund to the prescribed income-tax authority or the person authorised by such authority, subject to verification in accordance with the risk management strategy formulated by the Board from time to time.”;

(iii) after sub-section (5D), the following sub-section shall be inserted, namely:–

“(5E) All applications, pending before the Commissioner on which no order has been passed under clause (vi) of sub-section (5) before the date on which this sub-section has come into force, shall be deemed to be applications made under clause (iv) of the first proviso to sub-section (5) on that date.”.

PROPOSED CHANGE BY THE FINANCE BILL UNDER THE FOLLOWING SECTION :-

1. Section 43B:- Allowing deduction for amount disallowed under section 43B, to insurance companies on payment basis.

Section 43B of the Act provides for allowance of certain deductions, irrespective of the previous year in which the liability to pay such sum was incurred by the assessee according to the method of accounting regularly employed by the assessee, only in the previous year in which such sum is actually paid.

Section 44 of the Act provides that computation of profits and gains of any business of insurance, including any such business carried on by a mutual insurance company or a co-operative society shall be computed in accordance with the rules contained in the First Schedule to the Act.

As per Rule 5 of the First Schedule, the deduction of expenditure was subject to the provisions of Sec 43B but there is no provision of allowance of the expenses in subsequent year on actual payment.

In the finance bill 2020 has proposed to insert a proviso after clause (c) of the said rule 5 to provide that any sum payable by the assessee which is added back under section 43B in accordance with clause (a) of the said rule shall be allowed as deduction in computing the income under the rule in the previous year in which such sum is actually paid.

2. U/s 143 Tax Administration and Compliance:-

i. Modification of e-assessment scheme sub section (3A)

Section 143 of the Act provides the manner for processing and assessment of return of income (ITR) where a return has been made under section 139, or in response to a notice under sub-section (1) of section 142 of the Act. Section 143(3A) provides that the Central Government may make a scheme, by notification in the Official Gazette, for the purposes of making assessment of total income or loss of the assessee under section 143(3) so as to impart greater efficiency, transparency and accountability by certain means specified therein. Accordingly, E-assessment Scheme, 2019 was notified under section 143(3A) of the Act.

Now, the scope of section 143(3A) has been expanded to include the reference of section 144 of the Act relating to best judgment assessment in the said sub-section.

ii. Modification of e-assessment scheme sub section (3B) of section 143

The central government for purpose of giving effect to the scheme made under sub section (3A) by a notification in the official gazette, direct that any of the provision of this act relating to assessment of total income or loss shall not apply or shall apply with such exception modification and adaptations as may be specified in this notification provided that no direction shall be issue after the 31st day of march 2020.

In the Finance Bill 2020 has proposed and extended the period from 31st March 2020 to 31st March 2022.

iii. New System of e-appeal

It is proposed to insert new sub-section (6A) in section 250 of the Act to provide for the following: —

Empowering Central Government to notify new an e-appeal scheme for disposal of appeal by CIT(A) so as to impart greater efficiency, transparency and accountability.

Eliminating the interface between the CIT (A) and the appellant in the course of appellate proceedings to the extent technologically feasible.

Optimizing utilization of the resources through economies of scale and functional specialization.

Introducing an appellate system with dynamic jurisdiction in which appeal shall be disposed of by one or more CIT(A).

proposed to empower the Central Government, for the purpose of giving effect to the scheme made under the proposed sub- section, by notification in the Official Gazette, to direct that any of the provisions of this Act relating to jurisdiction and procedure of disposal of appeal shall not apply or shall apply with such exceptions, modifications and adaptations as maybe specified in the notification. Such directions are to be issued on or before 31st March 2022.

3. Amendment in section 139 of the Income tax Act, in sub clause (1) in explanation 2 in clause (a)

The due date for filling return other than the assessee who is required to furnish a report referred to in section 92E, company and other than company whose account are to be required to be audited under this act, or any other laws for the time being enforce, working partner of the firm whose accounts are required to be audited under this act or under any other law for the time being enforce has been substituted from 30th day to September to 31st day of October. The return of the company, other than company audited u/s 44AB of the Income tax Act, the due date for file to return from 30th day of September has been substituted to 31st day of October.

4. Amendment in section 140 of the Income tax Act

The provision of section 140 return u/s 139 or section 115WD shall be verified by :—

a) IN case of an individual

i) By the individual himself

ii) Where he is absent from India, by the individual himself or by sum person duly authorized by him in this behalf

iii) Where is mentally in capacitated from attending to his affairs by his guardian or any other person competent to act on a behalf and

iv) Where for the any other person it is not possible for the individual to verify the return by any person duly authorized by him in this behalf

In the finance bill following amendment has been proposed:-

i) In case of a company by the managing director is not able to verify the return, the any other person as may be prescribed for this purpose shall be inserted and

ii) In case of clause (cd) in case of limited liability partnership the word by any partner thereof had been inserted from any other person as may be prescribed for this purpose, if the dignities partner are not able to verify the return the any other person as authorized by the partner shall verified the return.

5. New section 285BB has been Inserted in the Finance Bill 2020

In the finance bill 2019 the section 285BA was inserted obligation to furnish statement of financial transaction or reportable accounts and in the finance bill new section 285BA has been inserted with effect from 1st June 2020 namely

The prescribe income tax authority or the person authorized by the such authority shall uploaded in the registered account of the assessee an annual information statement in such form and manner with such time and alongwith such information which is in the possession of an income tax authority, as may be prescribed”

As per provision of section 285BA the financial transaction has been uploaded on income tax site but the new section 285BB has been inserted and the Income tax Authority shall be uploaded the information again the information of the assessee on the registered ID of the assessee which is in the possession of income tax authority.

6. Amendment in section 288 in The Finance Bill 2020

The section 288(2) authorized the representative who is entitled to attend the case before the authority. IN this section after clause (vii) a new clause (viii) has been inserted namely “any other person as may be prescribe”

1. Withdrawal of perquisites/allowances to Union Public Services Commission (UPSC), and members of Chief Election Commissioners and Election Commissioners

Under the existing provisions of section 10(45), the any allowance or perquisite as notified by the Central Government paid to the Chairman or Retired Chairman or any other member or retired members of Union Public Services Commission was to be considered as an exempt income and was accordingly no tax was to be paid on this income received. These provisions were introduced by Finance Act, 2011 with retrospective effect from
1-4-2008. Also, currently specified perquisites of Chief Election Commissioner or Election Commissioner are exempt from taxation under the enabling provisions in the respective acts governing their service conditions i.e. under section 8 of Election Commission (Conditions of Service of Election Commissioners and Transaction of Business) Act, 1991.

The following perquisites/allowances were notified by Central Government under the said section vide Notification No. 49 of 2011,

Allowances exempt in case of serving chairman and members of UPSC:

(i) the value of rent-free official residence;

(ii) the value of conveyance facilities including transport allowance;

(iii) the sumptuary allowance;

(iv) the value of leave travel concession provided to a serving Chairman or member of the UPSC and members of his family.

Allowances exempt in case of retired chairman and retired members of UPSC:

(i) a sum of maximum of ₹ 14,000 per month for defraying the service of an orderly and for meeting expenses incurred towards secretarial assistance on contract basis;

(ii) the value of a residential telephone free of cost and the number of free calls to the extent of 1500 per month (overall and above the number of free calls per month allowed by telephone authorities).

It is now proposed to delete the section 10(45) of the Income Tax Act, 1961. As of consequence, these allowances and perquisites will no more be exempt. Further, even section 8 of Election Commission Act, 1991 is amended to delete the exemption of income tax on value of of rent-free residence, conveyance facilities, sumptuary allowance, medical facilities and other such conditions of service as are applicable to a Judge of the Supreme Court, paid to Chief Election Commissioner and other Election Commissioners.

It is to be noted that similar tax exemptions provided to the Judges of Supreme Court under the Supreme Court Judges (Condition and services) Act, 1958 are still intact and are not proposed to be deleted.

This amendment is effective from AY 2021-22 and subsequent years.

2. Threshold limit set for employer’s contribution to recognized provident funds, superannuation funds and national pension scheme (NPS)

The existing provisions of section 17(2)(vii), provides that any contribution made by employer to the approved superannuation fund for the assessee in excess of ₹ 1,50,000/- shall be chargeable to tax in hands of employee as perquisites.

Also, the contribution made by employer for the employee on account of recognized provident fund exceeding 12% of salary is taxable. The assessee is also allowed deduction under NPS u/s. 80 CCD (1) of the Act for amount contributed up to 14% of salary by Central Government and amount up to 10% contributed by any other employer. Currently, there is no upper limit to the cumulative allowability of these deductions.

Now, the said sub section 17(2) (vii) is substituted by new subsections (vii) and (viia) which provides that a combined upper limit of seven lakh and fifty thousand rupee in respect of employer’s contribution in a year to NPS, superannuation fund and recognised provident fund and any excess contribution. Consequently, it is also provided that any annual accretion by way of interest, dividend or any other amount of similar nature during the previous year to the balance at the credit of the fund or scheme may be treated as perquisite to the extent it relates to the employer’s contribution which is included in total income.

The rationale behind bringing an upper limit threshold for contributions made by employer was mentioned by the Finance Minister in his speech and memorandum to Finance Bill, is no combine upper limit for the purpose of deduction of contribution made by employer has given undue advantage to employees earning high salary income. While an employee with low salary income is not able to let employer contribute a large part of his salary to all these three funds, employees with high salary income are able to design their salary package in a manner where a large part of their salary is paid by the employer in these three funds. Thus, this portion of salary does not suffer taxation at any point of time, since Exempt-Exempt-Exempt (EEE) regime is followed for these three funds. Thus, not having a combined upper cap is iniquitous and hence, not desirable.

As an effect to this amendment, the employers have to be very careful in structuring the salary of their employees and shall also have to take care in calculation of TDS so as to include contributions and interest accrued on those as perquisite income in hands of employees.

This amendment is effective from AY: 2021-22 and subsequent assessment years.

3. Additional Compliance Provisions for scientific research organisations

Section 35 allows the expenditure incurred by an assessee for scientific research for its own business or for contribution towards certain approved scientific research associations, universities, colleges etc. or to any other company which uses it for scientific research. In order to be eligible to claim the expenditure, the expense should be made to the aforesaid associations to make application for grant of approval from the Central Government.

In order to keep a check on such scientific research associations, universities, colleges and companies etc., and to rationalise the provisions afresh, the section has been amended to include a proviso to provide that every notification in respect of such research association, university, college or other institution under clause (ii) and clause (iii) or under clause (iia) in respect of the company issued by Central Government shall stand withdrawn unless such research associations etc. makes an intimation to income tax authority in such form and manner within three months from 1st June, 2020 (the effective date of this amendment). Once such intimation is received, the notification shall be valid for another 5 assessment years beginning from AY: 2021-22. It is also provided that if the Central Government notifies any such institutions to avail deduction after the Finance Bill, 2020 is enacted into Act, such notification shall be effective for another 5 consequent assessment years.

Moreover, a new sub section (1A) has been introduced to provide that such deductions to contributions as referred in sub section (1) shall be allowed only if such research associations etc., prepares and submits such statement to income tax authority as to be prescribed. Also, provisions have been given for filing a correction statement for rectification of any mistakes in the statements furnished at earlier occasion and to furnish the donor a certificate specifying the amount of donation within such time and manner from receipt of donation as may be prescribed.

The rationale behind introducing these provisions could be to streamline the deductions made to scientific research associations etc. and have the data about such organisations updated. Further, there have been cases traced in past to misuse these provisions to avail extra deduction and these steps may be taken to provide for an extra check measure to such misuse. However, these provisions shall definitely be an extra burden on such institutions and they have to act immediately by furnishing such intimation to avoid the withdrawal of such notification received by it.

4. Providing an option to assessee not avail deduction of section 35AD

Under the present provisions of section 35AD (1), 100% deduction is allowed on capital expenditure (other than expenditure on land, goodwill and financial assets) incurred on any specified businesses during the previous year in which such expenditure is incurred. However as per the current provisions, the assessee does not have an option to not avail the incentive under this section. It seems from the language of the present statute that it is mandatory to claim this deduction of the conditions of the section are met with.

Moreover, sub section (4) of section 35AD, provides that no deduction shall be allowed under any other section in respect of expenditure referred to in sub section (1) in any previous year or under this section in any other previous year.

However, because of the wording of these sections, there was a legal anomaly that those domestic companies who opt for concessional tax rates u/s. 115BAA and 115BAB of the Act and therefore does not claim deduction u/s. 35AD, would also be denied normal depreciation u/s. 32 by virtue of operation of sub section (4) of section 35AD of the Act. However, this would tantamount to misinterpretation and was not the intention of law and to correct this position, amendments have been made in section 35AD (1) to make the operation of section optional for assessee. Also, sub section (4) has been suitably amended to specifically provide that no deduction in respect of this section shall be allowed if the deduction has been claimed by assessee and allowed to him under this section.

This amendment is effective from AY: 2020-21 and subsequent assessment years.

5. Recognized association to be replaced by recognized stock exchange for commodity derivative transactions

Proviso to section 43(5) exempted an eligible transaction in respect of trading in commodity derivatives from being treated as speculative transaction provided it is conducted through a recognized association (commodity exchange). Since now all commodity derivative transactions are now carried out only on recognized stock exchanges, section 43(5) has been amended to replace the words recognized association with recognized stock exchange at all places it appears in the section.

Also, definition of recognized stock exchange in sub clause (iii) of Explanation 2 to section 43(5) has been amended to mean it as recognized stock exchange as referred in section 2 (f) of the Security Contracts (Regulation) Act, 1956 and the one which fulfils such conditions as may be prescribed and notified by the Central Government for that purpose.

6. Cost of acquisition of the land or building as on 1-4-2001

Section 55 provides that for calculation of capital gains, an assessee shall be allowed deduction for cost of acquisition and cost if improvement. However in cases when the asset is acquired before 1-4-2001, the assessee is allowed to either consider fair market value of the asset as on 1-4-2001 or the actual cost as the cost of acquisition for the purposes of computation of capital gains. Also, in cases where the asset has been received by any modes mentioned in section 49(1) like inheritance, will, gift etc. and it became property of the previous owner before 1-4-2001 than the assessee has an option to consider the fair market value as on 1-4-2001 as the cost of acquisition.

With a view to rationalise this provision, a proviso is inserted to section 55(2)(ac) to provide that in case the asset is land and building or both, the fair market value of such an asset cannot be more than the stamp duty value of the asset as on that date in cases where it is available. Further, stamp duty value for purpose of this proviso shall mean the value adopted or assessed or assessable by any authority of the Central Government or a State government for the purposes of payment of stamp duty of immovable property.

This amendment shall be effective from AY: 2021-22 and subsequent assessment years.

7. Introduction of Tax Payers Charter in the Act

A new section 119A has been introduced in the Act to empower the CBDT to adopt and declare a tax payer’s charter and issue such orders, instructions, directions or guidelines to other income tax authorities as it may deem fit for the administration of charter. At present there is a Citizen’s Charter in place however it is not forming part of the Act and therefore is quite informal and rarely followed. This is a welcome move as administration between the Board and income tax authorities have also been privy to their internal circulars, instructions etc. and with introduction of such charter in the Act itself, it shall be binding on all income tax authorities and assesses throughout. This may bring better administration, transparency and speedy disposal.

This amendment shall take effect from 1-4-2020

8. Restriction on the power of survey by Income Tax Authorities

Section 133A empowers the Income tax authority as defined therein to conduct survey proceedings at the business premises of the assessee under his jurisdiction. To avoid the abuse of these survey provisions by the Income Tax Authority and to protect interest of assessee, in Finance Act 2003, sub section 6 to section 133 was introduced to provide that any officer below the rank of Joint Commissioner or Joint Director i.e. like Assessing Officer, Assistant Commissioner of Income Tax, Tax recovery officer etc., cannot undertake survey proceedings without prior approval from Joint Director or Joint Commissioner. Now these provisions are widened further to provide substitute sub section (6) as under:

– In case when information has been received from the prescribed authority, no income tax authority below the rank of Joint Director or Joint Commissioner shall conduct any survey under this section without prior approval of Joint Director or Joint Commissioner; and

– In any other cases, no income tax authority below the rank of Commissioner or Director, shall conduct any survey proceedings without prior approval from Commissioner or Director.

Introduction of this provision shall provide a check on the growing survey proceedings and avoid unnecessary harassment to tax payers as promised by the Honourable Finance Minister.

This amendment shall take effect from 1-4-2020