CA Sandeep Kanoi
In this case, we find that the order disposing of the objections refers to and relies upon investigation carried out by Sales Tax department, the information put up by Sales Tax department on it’s website and the affidavit cum- declaration filed by the defaulting parties with the Sales Tax authorities. None of the above facts were even remotely adverted to in the grounds recorded for reopening the assessment. It is settled position in law that the validity of reopening of an assessment can only be tested by the reasons recorded at the time of issuing the notice for reopening an assessment. These grounds for reopening of assessment can neither be substituted and / or supplemented. The reopening of assessment will either stand or fall only upon the reasons recorded before issuing the impugned notice. Thus the order disposing of the objection relying on facts which were not a part of the reasons recorded makes the same unsustainable in law.
In view of the fact that the order disposing of the objections is beyond the reasons recorded for reopening the assessment, we set aside the order dated 23 July 2014, disposing of the objections. We direct the Assessing Officer to dispose of the objections of the petitioner dated 23 July 2014 to the impugned notice dated 21 March 2014 afresh keeping in mind the reasons, recorded for issuing the impugned notice. The Assessing Officer is directed to dispose of the objections as expeditiously as possible and preferably within three weeks from today.