RTI Act – Income Tax Department determined to deny information – fails in second appeal before HC – no prejudice would be caused in any manner to Revenue if information is disclosed : Delhi HC

NEW DELHI, JAN 02, 2008 : JUST a week ago, we carried a story and case where a Single Bench of the Delhi High Court had taken serious note of the lackadaisical approach of the Department in releasing the information. The High Court had directed the department to furnish the information within two weeks.

Do you think the information was furnished? Respect for judiciary or reducing litigation are not exactly priority areas for Revenue. They took the matter in appeal before a Division Bench.

The Division Bench was not amused and held,

“We find no reason as to why the aforesaid information cannot be furnished at this stage as the investigation process is not going to be hampered in any manner and particularly in view of the fact that such information is being furnished only after the investigation process is complete as far as Director of Income Tax (Investigation) is concerned. It has not been explained in what manner and how information asked for and directed will hamper the assessment proceedings.

Therefore, no prejudice would be caused in any manner to the Department even if the said information is disclosed. We find no merit in this appeal, which accordingly stands dismissed.”

The Court however granted one more week to the Department to furnish the information.

Hopefully the Department would furnish the information instead of rushing to the Supreme Court.

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