Jain Amar Foundation, Ludhiana v. CIT(E), Chandigarh

ITA 1487/CHANDI/2019 | misc
Pronouncement Date: 24-05-2021 | Result: Allowed

Appeal Details

RSA Number 148721514 RSA 2019
Assessee PAN AADCJ9918L
Bench Chandigarh
Appeal Number ITA 1487/CHANDI/2019
Duration Of Justice 1 year(s) 6 month(s) 4 day(s)
Appellant Jain Amar Foundation, Ludhiana
Respondent CIT(E), Chandigarh
Appeal Type Income Tax Appeal
Pronouncement Date 24-05-2021
Appeal Filed By Assessee
Order Result Allowed
Bench Allotted A
Tribunal Order Date 24-05-2021
Date Of Final Hearing 01-03-2021
Next Hearing Date 01-03-2021
Last Hearing Date 12-01-2021
First Hearing Date 12-01-2021
Assessment Year misc
Appeal Filed On 19-11-2019
Judgment Text
IN THE INCOME TAX APPELLATE TRIBUNAL DIVISION BENCH A CHANDIGARH BEFORE SHRI N.K. SAINI VICE PRESIDENT & SHRI R.L NEGI JUDICIAL MEMBER ./ ITA NOS. 1487/CHD/2019 [ [ / U/S 12AA (1)(B)(II) JAIN AMAR FOUNDATION 992/1 PIPAL BUILDING CHAWAL BAZAR LUDHIANA THE CIT (E ) CHANDIGARH ./ PAN NO: AADCJ9918L / APPELLANT / RESPONDENT HEARING THROUGH VIDEO CONFERENCING [ / ASSESSEE BY : SHRI S.C. JAIN CA / REVENUE BY : SMT. C. CHANDRAKANTA CIT (DR) / DATE OF HEARING : 01.03.2021 / DATE OF PRONOUNCEMENT : 24.05.2021 / ORDER PER R.L. NEGI JUDICIAL MEMBER: THE ASSESSEE HAS FILED THE PRESENT APPEAL AGAINST THE ORDER DATED 19.09.2019 PASSED BY COMMISSIONER OF INCOME TAX (EXEMPTIONS) CHANDIGARH [FOR SHORT THE CIT(E)] U/S12AA(1)(B)(II) OF THE INCOME TAX ACT 1961 (FOR SHORT 'THE ACT) WHEREBY THE LD. CIT(E) HAS DISMISSED THE APPLICATION SEEKING REGISTRATION U/S 12AA FILED BY THE APPLICANT COMPANY. 2. BRIEF FACTS OF THE CASE ARE THAT THE APPELLANT/APPLICANT FILED AN APPLICATION IN THE FORM NO. ITA NO. 1487-CHD-2019 JAIN AMAR FOUNDATION LUDHIANA 2 10A ON 30.03.2019 SEEKING REGISTRATION U/S 12AA OF THE ACT. THE LD. CIT(E) ISSUED QUESTIONNAIRE THROUGH ON LINE PORTAL IN TERMS OF RULE 17A OF THE INCOME TAX RULES. IN RESPONSE THEREOF THE APPLICANT COMPANY SOUGHT TIME TO FILE REPLY TILL 20.06.2019. ON 19.0.2019 THE APPLICANT MANUALLY SUBMITTED ITS REPLY. THEREAFTER THE LD. CIT(E) ASKED TO PROVIDE DOCUMENTARY EVIDENCE TO ESTABLISH THE ACTIVITIES CARRIED OUT BY THE APPLICANT FOUNDATION. SINCE NO RESPONSE WAS RECEIVED FROM THE APPLICANT ON THE APPOINTED DATE THE LD. CIT(E) REJECTED THE APPLICATION FOR THE REASON THAT THE APPLICANT HAS FAILED TO PRODUCE THE DOCUMENTARY EVIDENCE TO ESTABLISH THAT THE ENTITY HAS BEEN CREATED FOR THE BENEFIT OF THE GENERAL PUBLIC. 3. THE APPLICANT COMPANY HAS CHALLENGED THE ACTION OF THE LD. CIT(E) ON THE FOLLOWING GROUNDS: 1. THAT CIT(E) CHANDIGARH HAS NOT PROVIDED THE PROPER OPPORTUNITY BEFORE DENYING THE REGISTRATION TO THE ASSESSEE COMPANY U/S 12AA OF THE INCOME TAX ACT 1961 (IN SHORT 'THE ACT') WHICH VIOLATES THE PRINCIPLES OF NATURAL JUSTICE HENCE THE REGISTRATION U/S 12AA OF THE INCOME TAX ACT 1961 MAYBE GRANTED. 2. THE CIT (E) HAS ERRED IN THE EYES OF LAW FOR NOT GRANTING EXEMPTION U/S 12AA OF THE INCOME TAX ACT 1961 IN ACCORDANCE WITH LAW HENCE THE REGISTRATION U/S 12AA OF THE INCOME TAX ACT 1961 MAY PLEASE BE GRANTED. 3. THE ASSESSEE CRAVES TO LEAVE AMEND ALTER TAKE ADDITIONAL GROUNDS OF APPEAL BEFORE OR AT THE TIME OF HEARING. ITA NO. 1487-CHD-2019 JAIN AMAR FOUNDATION LUDHIANA 3 4. SINCE THERE IS A DELAY OF ONE DAY IN FILING THE PRESENT APPEAL THE LD. COUNSEL SUBMITTED BEFORE US THAT THE ASSESSEE HAS FILED AN APPLICATION FOR CONDONATION OF DELAY OF ONE DAY IN FILING THE PRESENT APPEAL. IN THE LIGHT OF THE APPLICATION THE LD. COUNSEL SUBMITTED THAT SINCE THERE IS NO NEGLIGENCE OR INACTION ON THE PART OF THE ASSESSEE AND THE DELAY WAS ATTRIBUTABLE TO THE POSTAL DEPARTMENT THE APPLICATION MAY BE ALLOWED AND DELAY OF ONE DAY MAY BE CONDONED. THE REASON STATED IN THE APPLICATION IS THAT THE MEMO OF APPEAL IN FORM 36 WAS SENT THROUGH SPEED POST FROM LUDHIANA ON 15.11.2019 HOWEVER THE SAME WAS RECEIVED IN THE OFFICE ON 19.11.2019. THE ASSESSEE HAS ALSO FURNISHED THE COPY OF POSTAL RECEIPT ISSUED BY THE DEPARTMENT TO SUBSTANTIATE ITS CONTENTION. 5. THE LD. DEPARTMENTAL REPRESENTATIVE OPPOSED THE APPLICATION FOR CONDONATION OF DELAY FILED BY THE ASSESSEE STATING THAT THE REASON STATED BY THE ASSESSEE IS NOT SUFFICIENT TO CONDONE THE DELAY. 6. WE HAVE PERUSED THE MATERIAL ON RECORD. THE HONBLE APEX COURT IN THE CASE OF COLLECTOR LAND ACQUISITION VS. MST. KATIJI & OTHERS 1987 SCR (2) 387 HAS HELD AS UNDER: REFUSING TO CONDONE DELAY CAN RESULT IN A MERITORIOUS MATTER BEING THROWN OUT AT THE VERY THRESHOLD AND CAUSE OF JUSTICE BEING DEFEATED. AS AGAINST THIS WHEN DELAY IS CONDONED THE ITA NO. 1487-CHD-2019 JAIN AMAR FOUNDATION LUDHIANA 4 HIGHEST THAT CAN HAPPEN IS THAT A CAUSE WOULD BE DECIDED ON MERITS AFTER HEARING THE PARTIES 7. AS SUBMITTED BY THE LD. COUNSEL THE ASSESSEE SENT ITS APPEAL TO THE ITAT CHANDIGARH ON 15.11.2019 FROM LUDHIANA THROUGH SPEED POST. HOWEVER THE POSTAL DEPARTMENT DELIVERED THE LETTER/ENVELOPE CONTAINING THE APPEAL ON FIFTH DAY I.E. ON 19.11.2019. HENCE IN OUR CONSIDERED VIEW THE REASON STATED BY THE ASSESSEE IS SUFFICIENT TO CONDONE THE DELAY OF ONE DAY IN THIS CASE. ACCORDINGLY WE ALLOWED THE APPLICATION OF THE ASSESSEE AND ASKED THE LD. COUNSEL FOR THE ASSESSEE TO ARGUE THE APPEAL OF THE ASSESSEE ON MERITS. 8. THE LD. COUNSEL AT THE OUT SET SUBMITTED THAT THE LD. CIT(E) HAS PASSED THE IMPUGNED ORDER IN VIOLATION OF THE PRINCIPLES OF NATURAL JUSTICE AS NO REASONABLE OPPORTUNITY OF BEING HEARD WAS AFFORDED TO THE APPLICANT COMPANY. THE LD. COUNSEL FURTHER POINTED OUT THAT THE APPLICANT COMPANY SUBMITTED ITS REPLY ONE DAY BEFORE THE STIPULATED DATE. THEREAFTER NO NOTICE WAS SERVED UPON THE COMPANY AND THE LD. CIT(A) PASSED THE IMPUGNED ORDER. THE LD. COUNSEL ACCORDINGLY SUBMITTED THAT THE IMPUGNED ORDER MAY BE SET ASIDE AND THE LD. CIT(E) MAY BE DIRECTED TO ALLOW THE REGISTRATION SOUGHT BY THE APPLICANT. 9. THE LD. DR ON THE OTHER HAND SUPPORTING THE ORDER PASSED BY THE LD. CIT(E) SUBMITTED THAT SINCE THE ITA NO. 1487-CHD-2019 JAIN AMAR FOUNDATION LUDHIANA 5 APPLICANT COMPANY FAILED TO RESPOND TO THE QUERY DATED 06.09.2019 RAISED BY THE LD. CIT(E) THE LD. CIT(E) HAS RIGHTLY DISMISSED THE APPLICATION ON THE BASIS OF MATERIAL AVAILABLE ON RECORD. 10. WE HAVE HEARD THE RIVAL SUBMISSIONS OF THE PARTIES AND ALSO PERUSED THE MATERIAL ON RECORD. AS POINTED OUT BY THE LD. COUNSEL THE APPLICANT COMPANY FILED ITS REPLY IN RESPONSE TO THE LETTER DATED 30.04 2019. AS PER THE ORDER OF THE LD. CIT(E) FURTHER QUERY WAS RAISED ON 06.09.2019 AND THE APPLICANT COMPANY WAS DIRECTED TO PROVIDE DOCUMENTARY EVIDENCE TO PROVE THE ACTIVITIES CARRIED OUT BY THE FOUNDATION ON 09.09.2019. HOWEVER WE DO NOT FIND ANY MATERIAL ON RECORD TO HOLD THAT THE NOTICE DATED 06.09.2019 WAS SERVED UPON THE APPLICANT COMPANY BEFORE 09.09.2019. MOREOVER THE LD. CIT(E) HAS NOT MENTIONED IN THE IMPUGNED ORDER AS TO HOW AND WHEN THE SAID NOTICE WAS SERVED UPON THE APPLICANT COMPANY. UNDER THESE CIRCUMSTANCES WE FIND MERIT IN THE CONTENTION OF THE LD. COUNSEL THAT THE LD. CIT(E) HAS PASSED THE IMPUGNED ORDER WITHOUT AFFORDING A REASONABLE OPPORTUNITY TO THE APPLICANT COMPANY TO PRESENT ITS CASE. HENCE WE HOLD THAT THE LD. CIT(E) HAS PASSED THE IMPUGNED ORDER IN VIOLATION OF ONE OF THE FUNDAMENTAL PRINCIPLES OF NATURAL JUSTICE AUDI ALTERAM PARTEM I.E. ITA NO. 1487-CHD-2019 JAIN AMAR FOUNDATION LUDHIANA 6 WITHOUT AFFORDING A REASONABLE OPPORTUNITY OF BEING HEARD TO THE APPLICANT COMPANY. WE ACCORDINGLY SET ASIDE THE IMPUGNED ORDER IN THE INTEREST OF JUSTICE AND SEND THE APPEAL BACK TO THE LD. CIT(E) FOR DECIDING THE APPLICATION OF THE APPLICANT COMPANY ON MERITS AFTER AFFORDING A REASONABLE OPPORTUNITY OF BEING HEARD TO THE APPELLANT COMPANY. IN THE RESULT THE PRESENT APPEAL FILED BY THE APPLICANT COMPANY IS ALLOWED FOR STATISTICAL PURPOSES. ORDER PRONOUNCED ON 24.05.2021. SD/- SD/- ( N.K. SAINI) ( R.L.NEGI ) / VICE PRESIDENT / JUDICIAL MEMBER DATED : 24.05.2021 .. / COPY OF THE ORDER FORWARDED TO : 1. / THE APPELLANT 2. / THE RESPONDENT 3. / CIT 4. ( )/ THE CIT(A) 5. / DR ITAT CHANDIGARH 6. [ / GUARD FILE / BY ORDER / ASSISTANT REGISTRAR