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Case Law Details

Case Name : Remya Vikraman Nair Rema Devi Vs Central Board of Direct Taxes (Kerala High Court)
Appeal Number : WA No. 491 of 2024
Date of Judgement/Order : 05/04/2024
Related Assessment Year : 2016-17

Remya Vikraman Nair Rema Devi Vs Central Board of Direct Taxes (Kerala High Court)

The recent judgment by the Kerala High Court in the case of Remya Vikraman Nair Rema Devi vs. Central Board of Direct Taxes addresses the issue of recovery proceedings initiated by the Income Tax Department against an assessee while the statutory appeal and stay application were pending.

The appellant had filed an appeal (Ext.P2) and a stay application (Ext.P3) against the assessment order (Ext.P1) for the assessment years 2016-2017 under the Income Tax Act. However, recovery steps were initiated by the respondents during the pendency of these proceedings. The appellant then approached the writ court seeking relief from the recovery proceedings, which led to the judgment dated 21.03.2024 by a learned Single Judge.

The appellant challenged the judgment of the learned Single Judge on the grounds that it did not grant a stay on the recovery proceedings until the appellate authority considered the stay application/appeal. Upon hearing arguments from both parties, the High Court modified the impugned judgment to ensure protection for the appellant from recovery proceedings during the pendency of the stay application or appeal.

The modification clarified that until the appellate authority disposed of the stay application or appeal, whichever is earlier, the recovery proceedings against the appellant would be kept in abeyance. This limited modification aimed to provide the necessary relief to the appellant while preserving the rest of the directions in the impugned judgment.

FULL TEXT OF THE JUDGMENT/ORDER OF KERALA HIGH COURT

Against Ext.P1 assessment order for the assessment years 2016-2017 under the Income Tax Act, the appellant had preferred Ext.P2 appeal and Ext.P3 application for stay pending disposal of the appeal. When recovery steps were initiated by the respondents during the pendency of the statutory appeal and stay application, the appellant approached the writ court through WP(C).No.11566 of 2024, which was disposed by a learned Single Judge by judgment dated 21.03.2024 relegating the appellant to the alternate remedy of appeal and directing the Appellate Authority to dispose the stay application within a period of two months. In the appeal before us, the appellant impugns the said judgment of the learned Single Judge solely on the ground that while disposing the Writ Petition, the learned Single Judge did not grant a stay of recovery proceedings till such time as the First Appellate Authority considered stay application/appeal as directed by the learned Single Judge.

2. We have heard Sri. K. P Pradeep, the learned counsel for the appellant and Sri. P. R Ajith Kumar, the learned Standing counsel for the Department.

3. In our view, since the learned Single Judge had relegated the appellant to the alternate remedy before the statutory authority it was incumbent upon the learned Judge to protect the appellant from recovery proceedings pending disposal of the application by the respondent Appellate Authority. Accordingly, we modify the impugned judgment of the learned Single Judge to the limited extent of clarifying that pending disposal of the stay application or appeal whichever is earlier, by the appellate authority, the recovery proceedings against the appellant for recovery of the amounts confirmed against him by Ext.P1 assessment order shall be kept in abeyance. Save for this limited modification, the rest of the directions in the impugned judgment are not interfered with.

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