Thursday, August 13, 2015

ITAT sounds note of caution for frivolous appeal by revenue; it damages public faith

Filing of appeal with complete knowledge of its fate by the Revenue only reflects the mischievous adamancy to attempt to mislead the Tribunal and waste the time of the Court and the officers concerned.
Facts:
1)    CIT(A) on its first remand order dated 06.06.2012 had accepted the application filed by assessee seeking permission to file additional evidence which was objected to by Assessing Officer (AO).
2)    On 22.06.2012 CIT(A) issued second remand report directing AO to verify the claim of assessee as same was unverified.
3)    In the second remand report, AO admitted the assessee’s claim and based on such remand report CIT(A) deleted the addition made under Section 68.
4)    Still, revenue filed appeal before tribunal referring to the fact that the relief was granted by CIT(A) on the basis of first remand report dated 06.06.2012 thereby consciously ignoring making reference to the second remand report dated 22.06.2012 before the tribunal.
Tribunal held in favour of assessee as under:
a)    Filing of an appeal by an Assessing Officer ('AO') is a right which is vested in him by the statue. However, same should be exercised by applying proper due diligence in order to avoid any inappropriate litigations.
b)    Since the claim had been given up in the second remand report by the AO himself in second remand report, he could not claim to be aggrieved by the findings arrived at relying upon his own remand report. The CIT(A) accepted the assessee's claim based on the strength of the second remand report. Reference to this material document, i.e., second remand report in the grounds raised by revenue was curiously missing. This omission appeared to be deliberate and led us to conclude that the revenue had consciously indulged in meritless litigation.
c)    Once the AO in second remand report had already communicated that the enquiries made after issuing notices under Section 133(6) to the parties/persons who had confirmed the assessee's version and the AO concluded that the loans taken stood verified. No further legitimate grievance could be said to have remained for examination by the AO.
d)    This deliberate, mischievous and selective reference to facts by such responsible persons grievously damages the public faith and belief in the honest fair play of the tax administration.
e)    Filing of appeal with complete knowledge of its fate by the Revenue only reflects on revenue’s attempt to mislead the Tribunal and waste the time of the Court and the officers concerned.

f)    Departmental officers had willfully and deliberately failed to exercise their powers using their minds as was required of them as per law and has abused government machinery to initiate a litigation which entailed financial costs and tarnished the image of the Department and also strained the government resources. - ACIT v. R.P.G. Credit & Capital Ltd. [2015] 60 taxmann.com 160 (Delhi - Trib.)
Post a Comment