Case Law Details

Case Name : Voora Property Developers Private Limited Vs ACIT (Madras High Court)
Appeal Number : Writ Petition No.27534 of 2022
Date of Judgement/Order : 02/01/2024
Related Assessment Year : 2020-21

Voora Property Developers Private Limited Vs ACIT (Madras High Court)

In a recent judgment, the Madras High Court, in the case of Voora Property Developers Private Limited vs. ACIT, took a strong stance against the Assessment Order dated 08.09.2022 for the Assessment Year 2020-21.

The court outlined that on 12.08.2022, the respondent had issued a show cause notice to the petitioner concerning proposed variations in the ongoing assessment proceedings. The petitioner was granted an opportunity to respond by 11:00 hours on 24.08.2022, with an adjournment request made for an extension until 09.2022. Despite the response being submitted on 08.09.2022 at approximately 11:30 a.m., the Assessment Order was surprisingly issued on the same date at about 1:52 p.m.

The crucial point raised by the petitioner’s counsel was that the response provided by the assessee was not taken into consideration, as explicitly stated in paragraph 2 of the Assessment Order.

In response to this contention, the respondent’s counsel argued that the petitioner had been given sufficient opportunity to respond, referring to paragraph 2 of the Assessment Order. However, concerning the reply dated 08.09.2022, it was claimed that such a reply was not reflected in the portal.

The petitioner substantiated their claim by presenting the reply dated 08.09.2022 and a screen-shot verifying the upload of the response. The screen-shot indicated that the reply had been uploaded at about 11:32 a.m. on 08.09.2022, whereas the Assessment Order, issued on the same day at about 1:52 p.m., explicitly stated that the response had not been received.

In essence, the court concluded that the assessee’s response was unjustly ignored during the issuance of the Assessment Order. This oversight, considering variations amounting to an aggregate sum of Rs. 9,99,92,429/-, could potentially prejudice the petitioner. Consequently, the court allowed the writ petition, quashing the impugned assessment order and remanding the matter for reconsideration.

The court directed the respondent to afford a reasonable opportunity to the petitioner, consider the response dated 08.09.2022, and complete a fresh assessment within a maximum period of four months from the date of receipt of a copy of this order. The connected miscellaneous petitions were closed, and no costs were imposed.

FULL TEXT OF THE JUDGMENT/ORDER OF MADRAS HIGH COURT

The petitioner assails Asessment Order dated 08.09.2022 in respect of Assessment Year 2020-21.

2. On 12.08.2022, the respondent issued a show cause notice to the petitioner in respect of proposed variations in the ongoing assessment proceedings pertaining to Assessment Year 2020-21. The petitioner was provided an opportunity to respond to the show cause notice on or before 11.00 hours on 24.08.2022. According to the petitioner, an adjournment request was made for an extension up to 09.2022. Pursuant thereto, the response was submitted on 08.09.2022 at about 11.30 a.m. The Assessment Order was issued on the same date at about 1.52 p.m. In the said Assessment Order, learned counsel for the petitioner points out that the response of the assessee was not taken into consideration as indicated in paragraph 2 thereof.

3. In response to this submission, learned counsel for the respondent submits that the petitioner was provided sufficient opportunity to respond to the proposal for variation by referring to the t at paragraph 2 of the Assessment Order. As regards the reply dated 08.09.2022, it was submitted that such reply was not reflected in the portal.

4. The petitioner has placed on record reply dated 08.09.2022 and the screen-shot pertaining to uploading of such reply. The relevant screen-shot indicates that the reply was uploaded on 08.09.2022 at about 11.32 a.m. The Assessment Order discloses that it was issued on 08.09.2022 at about 1.52 p.m. Paragraph 2 of the Assessment Order reveals that the response of the assessee was not received. In effect, the assessee’s response was not taken into consideration while issuing the Assessment Order. By the said Assessment Order, variations for an aggregate sum of Rs.9,99,92,429/- have been taken into consideration. Therefore, the petitioner would be put to prejudice unless the petitioner’s response is taken into consideration before such assessment is made.

5. For reasons set out above, the writ petition is allowed by quashing the impugned assessment order and the matter is remanded for reconsideration. The respondent is directed to provide a reasonable opportunity to the petitioner, consider response dated 08.09.2022 and complete a fresh assessment within a maximum period of four months from the date of receipt of a copy of this order. Consequently, connected miscellaneous petitions are closed. There shall be no order as to costs.

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