In the instant case the assessee seems to be quite negligent by not taking the necessary steps for filing the appeal within the time prescribed by the statute .The conduct of the assessee reveals that the assessee takes the condonation of delay provision as granted. The assessee did not care to submit any request for condonation of delay , even when it was brought specifically to his notice at the time of filing of appeal itself.Online GST Certification Course by TaxGuru & MSME- Click here to Join
In granting the indulgence and condoning the delay, it must be proved beyond the shadow of doubt that the assessee was diligent and was not guilty of negligence whatsoever. The sufficient cause within the contemplation of the limitation provision must be a cause which is beyond the control of the party invoking the aid of the provisions. In the case of Ramlal v. Rewa Coalfields Ltd. AIR 1962 SC 361, the Hon’ble Apex Court held that the cause for the delay in filing the appeal, which by due care and attention, could have been avoided, cannot be a sufficient cause within the meaning of the limitation provision. The rule of limitation also contains a rule of justice, especially where a person chooses not to take up requisite legal remedies for an inordinate length of time and without reasonable cause, the Tribunal should apply the rule of limitation. Seekers of justice must come with clean hands. In the instant case, we do not find any reasonable cause for condoning the delay.
In the light of aforesaid decisions, the burden is on the party claiming condonation of delay to place before the court, in clear and explicit terms, all facts on which the party relies, so that the court can come to the conclusion that it is not a case of want of diligence or inaction on the part of the assessee. Inaction or want of diligence on the part of the assessee would not entitle him to the benefit of the provisions of section 253(5) of the Act. In the case under consideration, admittedly, the assessee has not shown any action or vigilance for a period of more than 902 days after the impugned order was served upon . In the facts of the present case, the assessee has not proved any inaction or negligence on the part of a third party, much less have they pleaded any action or vigilance on their own part.
In view of the foregoing, especially when the assessee has not come with clean hands before us and has also failed to establish with cogent and proper evidence that there existed sufficient cause for not presenting the appeal within the stipulated period, delay of 902 days in filing appeal, can not be condoned.. As the appeal is barred by limitation, it deserves to be rejected on this ground alone. Therefore , we decline to admit the quantum appeal in ITA no.1238/Del./2011.