Recommendation For Amendment Of Section 255(3) To Widen The Scope Of Disposal Of Appeals By The Single Member Benches Of The Income Tax Appellate Tribunal

The existing provisions of Section 255(3) provide that a Single Member Bench of the Appellate Tribunal can dispose of Appeals in cases where the assessed income of the assessee does not exceed Rs.15 lakhs. On account of this limit, which is small in the view of the Committee, cases where the total income assessed is more than the above figure, cannot be heard by SMC Benches. The Committee recommends that in the interest of speedy disposal of appeals the limit can be enhanced to rupees one crore where the tax effect involved would be around Rs.30 lakhs. This will also help disposal of appeals in places where there is only one Bench functioning.

It is therefore recommended that Section 255(3) be amended as follows:

“(3) The President or any other member of the Appellate Tribunal authorized in this behalf by the Central Government may, sitting singly, dispose of any case which has been allotted to the Bench of which he is a member and which pertains to an assessee in whose case the total income assessed by the Assessing Officer does not exceed rupees one crore, and the President may, for the disposal of any particular case, constitute a Special Bench consisting of three or more members, one of whom shall necessarily be a judicial member and one an accountant member.”

Source- Draft Report of Justice R.V. Easwar (Retd) Committee to Simplify the provisions of Income-tax Act, 1961

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