SHRI RAJENDRA KUMAR AGARWAL, JAIPUR v. ASSISTANT COMMISSIONER OF INCOME TAX, CENTRAL CIRCLE-I, JAIPUR

ITA 423/JPR/2019 | 2014-2015
Pronouncement Date: 08-11-2019 | Result: Allowed

Appeal Details

RSA Number 42323114 RSA 2019
Assessee PAN ACPPC5384G
Bench Jaipur
Appeal Number ITA 423/JPR/2019
Duration Of Justice 7 month(s) 11 day(s)
Appellant SHRI RAJENDRA KUMAR AGARWAL, JAIPUR
Respondent ASSISTANT COMMISSIONER OF INCOME TAX, CENTRAL CIRCLE-I, JAIPUR
Appeal Type Income Tax Appeal
Pronouncement Date 08-11-2019
Appeal Filed By Assessee
Order Result Allowed
Bench Allotted B
Tribunal Order Date 08-11-2019
Last Hearing Date 09-07-2019
First Hearing Date 09-07-2019
Assessment Year 2014-2015
Appeal Filed On 27-03-2019
Judgment Text
VK;DJ VIHYH; VF/KDJ.K] T;IQJ U;K;IHB] T;IQJ IN THE INCOME TAX APPELLATE TRIBUNAL JAIPUR BENCHES B JAIPUR JH FOT; IKY JKO] U;KF;D LNL; OA JH FOE FLAG ;KNO] YS[KK LNL; DS LE{K BEFORE: SHRI VIJAY PAL RAO JM & SHRI VIKRAM SINGH YADAV AM VK;DJ VIHY LA -@ ITA NOS. 417 TO 423/JP/2019 FU/KZKJ.K O'KZ@ ASSESSMENT YEARS :2008-09 TO 2014-15 SHRI RAJENDRA KUMAR AGARWAL 137 RADHA DAMODAR KI GALI CHAURA RASTA JAIPUR. CUKE VS. A.C.I.T. CENTRAL CIRCLE-1 JAIPUR. LFKK;H YS[KK LA -@THVKBZVKJ LA -@ PAN/GIR NO.: ACPPC 5384 G VIHYKFKHZ@ APPELLANT IZR;FKHZ@ RESPONDENT FU/KZKFJRH DH VKSJ LS @ ASSESSEE BY : SHRI NITESH GUPTA (CA) JKTLO DH VKSJ LS @ REVENUE BY : SHRI B.K. GUPTA (CIT-DR) LQUOKBZ DH RKJH[K@ DATE OF HEARING : 07/11/2019 MN?KKS 'K.KK DH RKJH[K @ DATE OF PRONOUNCEMENT : 08/11/2019 VKNS'K@ ORDER PER: BENCH THESE SEVEN APPEALS BY THE ASSESSEE ARE DIRECTED AGAINST THE ONE COMPOSITE ORDER DATED 10/07/2018 OF LD. CIT(A)-IV JAIPUR FOR THE A.YS. 2008-09 TO 2012-13 AND TWO OTHER SEPARATE ORDERS BOTH DATED 16/11/2017 OF THE LD. CIT(A)-IV JAIPUR FOR THE A.Y. 2013-14 AND 2014-15 RESPECTIVELY. 2. THERE IS DELAY OF 204 DAYS IN FILING FIVE APPEALS FOR THE A.Y. 2008- 09 TO 2012-13 AND A DELAY OF 438 DAYS IN FILING TWO APPEALS FOR THE A.Y. ITA 417 TO 423/JP/2019_ SHRI RAJENDRA KR. AGARWAL VS ACIT 2 2013-14 AND 2014-15 RESPECTIVELY. THE ASSESSEE HAS FILED APPLICATION FOR CONDONATION OF DELAY IN ALL THESE APPEALS WHICH HAS BEEN SUPPORTED BY FILING DETAILED AFFIDAVITS OF THE ASSESSEE. 3. WE HAVE HEARD THE LD AR OF THE ASSESSEE AS WELL AS THE LD. DR ON CONDONATION OF DELAY IN FILING THESE APPEALS. THE LD AR OF THE ASSESSEE HAS SUBMITTED THAT THE LD. CIT(A) HAS PASSED EX PARTE ORDER IN ALL THESE APPEALS AND ALSO DISMISSED THE APPEALS OF THE ASSESSEE IN LIMINI BEING NOT MAINTAINABLE AS THE SAME WERE NOT FILED ELECTRONICALLY BUT WERE FILED MANUALLY. THE IMPUGNED ORDERS WERE PASSED BY THE LD. CIT(A) BECAUSE OF THE REASON THAT THE AUTHORIZED REPRESENTATIVE OF THE ASSESSEE DID NOT APPEAR BEFORE THE LD. CIT(A) AND ALSO NOT APPRISED THE ASSESSEE ABOUT THE STATUS AND PROGRESS OF THE APPEALS PENDING BEFORE THE LD. CIT(A). THE LD AR HAS FURTHER SUBMITTED THAT THERE WAS A DISPUTE BETWEEN THE ASSESSEE AND HIS AUTHORIZED REPRESENTATIVE (C.A.) WHO WAS LOOKING AFTER ALL HIS TAX MATTERS BEFORE THE A.O. AS WELL AS APPELLATE AUTHORITIES. SINCE THERE WAS A DISPUTE BETWEEN THE ASSESSEE AND THE AUTHORIZED REPRESENTATIVE RELATING TO THE ISSUE OF PROFESSIONAL FEE AND OTHER MISCELLANEOUS DISPUTES THE AUTHORIZED REPRESENTATIVE DID NOT APPEAR BEFORE THE LD. CIT(A) AND ALSO NOT HANDED OVER THE CASE RECORD AND APPEAL PAPERS TO THE ASSESSEE EVEN AFTER THE APPEALS OF THE ASSESSEE ITA 417 TO 423/JP/2019_ SHRI RAJENDRA KR. AGARWAL VS ACIT 3 WERE DISMISSED BY THE LD. CIT(A). HE HAS FURTHER SUBMITTED THAT DUE TO THE FEES RELATED DISPUTES BETWEEN THE ASSESSEE AND THE TAX CONSULTANT THE MATTER COULD NOT BE TAKEN UP PROPERLY AND ACCORDINGLY EVEN AFTER THE DISMISSAL OF THE APPEALS THE ASSESSEE WAS NOT INFORMED ABOUT THE STATUS AND FINALLY WHEN THE ASSESSEE HAS RECEIVED A CALL FROM THE INCOME TAX DEPARTMENT REGARDING THE OUTSTANDING DEMANDS OF THE INCOME TAX IN CONSEQUENCE OF THE DISMISSAL OF THE APPEALS BY THE LD. CIT(A) THE ASSESSEE CONSULTED ANOTHER TAX CONSULTANT AND THEN TOOK STEPS FOR COLLECTING ALL RELEVANT DOCUMENTS BY TAKING CERTIFIED COPIES OF THE ORDERS AS WELL AS OTHER DOCUMENTS. HE HAS THUS POINTED OUT THAT FINALLY THE CERTIFIED COPIES WERE RECEIVED FROM THE OFFICE OF THE LD. CIT(A) ON 12/02/2019 AND THEREAFTER PRESENT APPEALS WERE FILED THEREFORE THERE WAS A DELAY OF ABOUT 204 DAYS IN RESPECT OF FIVE APPEALS FOR THE A.Y. 2008-09 TO 2012-13 AND DELAY OF 438 DAYS IN RESPECT OF TWO APPEALS FOR THE A.Y. 2013-14 AND 2014-15. THE LD AR HAS FURTHER SUBMITTED THAT DURING THIS PERIOD THERE WAS A RECESSION IN THE JEWELLERY BUSINESS OF THE ASSESSEE AND THE ASSESSEE WAS ADVERSELY AFFECTED. ALL THE BANK ACCOUNTS OF THE ASSESSEE WERE SEIZED/ATTACHED BY THE INCOME TAX DEPARTMENT AS WELL AS THE INVENTORY WAS ALSO UNDER THE CUSTODY OF THE DEPARTMENT. THEREFORE THE ASSESSEE WAS PASSING THROUGH A BAD TIME AND WAS HAVING DEPRESSED AND DEJECTED STATE OF MIND. IN THESE ADVERSE CIRCUMSTANCES ITA 417 TO 423/JP/2019_ SHRI RAJENDRA KR. AGARWAL VS ACIT 4 THE ASSESSEE WAS HAVING DISPUTES WITH HIS TAX CONSULTANT AND THEREFORE THE APPEALS COULD NOT BE FILED IN TIME. HE HAS PLEADED THAT THE DELAY IN FILING THE APPEALS WAS NOT INTENTIONAL BUT DUE TO THE CIRCUMSTANCES WHICH WAS BEYOND THE CONTROL OF THE ASSESSEE. IN SUPPORT OF HIS CONTENTION HE HAS RELIED UPON THE DECISION OF THE HONBLE SUPREME COURT IN THE CASE OF COLLECTOR LAND ACQUISITION VS. MST. KATIJI (1987) 167 ITR 471 AND SUBMITTED THAT THE HONBLE SUPREME COURT HAS LAID DOWN THE PRINCIPLES FOR CONDONATION OF DELAY AND INTERPRETATION OF THE SUFFICIENT CAUSE AS EMPLOYED IN THE LEGISLATURE WHICH IS ADEQUATELY ELASTIC TO ENABLE THE COURTS TO APPLY THE LAW IN A MEANINGFUL MANNER WHICH SUBSERVES THE ENDS OF JUSTICE. HE HAS ALSO RELIED UPON THE DECISION OF THE HONBLE ALLAHABAD HIGH COURT IN THE CASE OF AUTO CENTRE VS STATE OF UTTAR PRADESH (2006) 278 ITR 281 (ALL) AND SUBMITTED THAT THE HONBLE HIGH COURT HAS HELD THAT THE LAW OF LIMITATION IS NOT MEANT TO DESTROY THE RIGHTS OF THE PARTIES RATHER THE IDEA IS THAT EVERY LEGAL REMEDY MUST BE KEPT ALIVE FOR A LEGISLATIVELY FIXED PERIOD OF TIME. HENCE THE LD AR HAS PRAYED THAT THE DELAY IN FILING THE APPEALS MAY BE CONDONED AND THE MATTER MAY BE SET ASIDE TO THE RECORD OF THE LD. CIT(A) FOR DECIDING THE SAME AFRESH AFTER GIVING AN OPPORTUNITY OF HEARING TO THE ASSESSEE. ITA 417 TO 423/JP/2019_ SHRI RAJENDRA KR. AGARWAL VS ACIT 5 4. ON THE OTHER HAND THE LD CIT-DR HAS VEHEMENTLY OPPOSED THE PRAYER FOR CONDONATION OF DELAY AND SUBMITTED THAT THE IMPUGNED ORDERS PASSED BY THE LD. CIT(A) WERE SENT THROUGH SPEED POST TO THE ASSESSEE AND NOT TO THE AUTHORIZED REPRESENTATIVE THEREFORE THE ASSESSEE WAS AWARE ABOUT THE IMPUGNED ORDERS PASSED BY THE LD. CIT(A). HE HAS FURTHER CONTENDED THAT THE ASSESSEE HAS NOT STATED THE CORRECT FACTS WHILE EXPLAINING THE CAUSE OF DELAY AND THEREFORE THERE WAS NO SUFFICIENT REASON FOR FILING THE APPEALS BELATEDLY. THE AVERMENTS MADE IN THE APPLICATION FOR CONDONATION OF DELAY AS WELL AS IN THE AFFIDAVITS ARE NOT FACTUALLY CORRECT. EVEN THE APPEALS FILED BEFORE THE LD. CIT(A) WERE DELAYED BY SIX DAYS AND NO APPLICATION FOR CONDONATION OF DELAY WAS FILED THEREFORE IT IS A CASE OF GROSS NEGLIGENCE ON THE PART OF THE ASSESSEE AND DOES NOT FALL IN THE CATEGORY OF BONAFIDE OR REASONABLE EXPLANATION. THE LD CIT-DR HAS FURTHER CONTENDED THAT ADOPTING A LIBERAL VIEW IN CONDONING THE DELAY IS ONE OF THE GUIDING PRINCIPLES BUT LIBERAL APPROACH CANNOT BE EQUATED WITH A LICENSE TO FILE THE APPEALS AT WILL-DISREGARDING THE TIME LIMITS FIXED BY THE STATUTE. THE SUFFICIENT CAUSE OF DELAY MUST ESTABLISH THAT BECAUSE OF SOME EVENT OR CIRCUMSTANCES ARISING BEFORE LIMITATION EXPIRED PREVENTED THE ASSESSEE TO FILE THE APPEAL IN TIME. INACTION AND NEGLIGENCE OF THE ASSESSEE ARE NO REASON WHICH CAN BE ITA 417 TO 423/JP/2019_ SHRI RAJENDRA KR. AGARWAL VS ACIT 6 CONSIDERED AS SUFFICIENT CAUSE FOR FILING BELATED APPEALS. THE LD CIT-DR HAS RELIED UPON THE FOLLOWING DECISIONS: (I) J.B. ADVANI & CO.(P) LTD. VS CIT (1969) 72 ITR 395 (II) BALWANT SINGH (DEAD) VS JAGDISH SINGH & ORS. (2010) 8 SCR 597 (III) DECISION DATED 13/11/2018 OF COCHIN BENCH OF THIS TRIBUNAL IN THE CASE OF CATHOLIC SYRIAN BANK LTD. VS DCIT IN ITA NOS. 341 TO 345/COCH/2018. THUS THE LD CIT-DR HAS SUBMITTED THAT THE ASSESSEE HAS FAILED TO BRING ON RECORD ANY SUFFICIENT CAUSE FOR INORDINATE DELAY IN FILING THE APPEALS BEFORE THE TRIBUNAL. 5. WE HAVE CONSIDERED THE RIVAL SUBMISSIONS AS WELL AS RELEVANT MATERIAL ON RECORD. AS REGARDS THE SUFFICIENCY OF CAUSE FOR FILING THE APPEALS BELATEDLY IT IS SETTLED PRINCIPLES OF LAW THAT THE COURTS HAVE TO TAKE LIBERAL APPROACH WHILE INTERPRETING THE EXPRESSION SUFFICIENT CAUSE FOR CONDONATION OF DELAY. IN CASE OF COLLECTOR LAND ACQUISITION VS. MST. KATIJI (SUPRA) THE HONBLE SUPREME COURT HAS LAID DOWN THE PRINCIPLE THAT THE POWER TO CONDONE THE DELAY PROVIDED UNDER THE STATUTE IS TO ENABLE THE COURTS TO DO SUBSTANTIAL JUSTICE TO THE PARTIES BY DISPOSING OF THE MATTER ON MERITS THEREFORE WHILE CONSIDERING THE MATTERS FOR CONDONATION OF DELAY THE LAW MUST BE APPLIED IN A MEANINGFUL MANNER WHICH SUBSERVES ENDS OF JUSTICE AND TECHNICAL CONSIDERATIONS SHOULD NOT ITA 417 TO 423/JP/2019_ SHRI RAJENDRA KR. AGARWAL VS ACIT 7 COME ON THE WAY OF CAUSE OF SUBSTANTIAL JUSTICE. THERE IS NO QUARREL THAT THE EXPLANATION AND REASONS EXPLAINED FOR DELAY MUST BE BONAFIDE AND NOT MERELY A DEVICE TO COVER AN ULTERIOR PURPOSE SUCH AS LACHES ON THE PART OF THE LITIGANT OR AN ATTEMPT TO SAVE LIMITATION IN THE UNDERHAND WAY. IF THE PARTY WHO IS SEEKING CONDONATION OF DELAY HAS NOT ACTED IN MALAFIDE MANNER AND REASONS EXPLAINED ARE FACTUALLY CORRECT THEN THE COURT SHOULD BE LIBERAL IN CONSTRUING THE SUFFICIENT CAUSE AND LEAN IN FAVOUR OF SUCH PARTY. A JUSTICE-ORIENTED APPROACH HAS TO BE TAKEN WHILE DECIDING THE MATTER FOR CONDONATION OF DELAY. HOWEVER THIS DOES NOT MEAN THAT A LITIGANT GETS FREE RIGHT TO APPROACH THE COURT AT ITS WILL. 6. IF WE APPLY THE SETTLED PRINCIPLES AS LAID DOWN BY THE HONBLE SUPREME COURT AS WELL AS OTHER COURTS ON THE FACTS OF THE PRESENT CASE WE FIND THAT THE ASSESSEE HAS EXPLAINED CAUSE OF DELAY THAT DUE TO SOME DISPUTE REGARDING THE PROFESSIONAL FEE OF THE TAX CONSULTANT WHO WAS REPRESENTING IN THE TAX MATTERS OF THE ASSESSEE BEFORE THE A.O. AS WELL AS LD. CIT(A) THE APPEALS OF THE ASSESSEE WERE DISMISSED FOR WANT OF REPRESENTATION. WE FIND THAT THE ASSESSEE HAS GIVEN THE PARTICULARS OF HIS TAX CONSULTANT IN THE APPLICATION FOR CONDONATION OF DELAY AS WELL AS AFFIDAVITS WHICH ARE MATCHING WITH THE PARTICULARS AS APPEARING IN THE ASSESSMENT ORDER. THE LD. CIT(A) HAS NARRATED THE FACTS REGARDING ITA 417 TO 423/JP/2019_ SHRI RAJENDRA KR. AGARWAL VS ACIT 8 VARIOUS NOTICES ISSUED TO THE ASSESSEE THOUGH THROUGH THE TAX CONSULTANT AS THE ADDRESS OF THE TAX CONSULTANT WAS GIVEN IN THE FORM NO. 35. IN RESPONSE TO THOSE NOTICES ON VARIOUS OCCASIONS THE TAX CONSULTANT APPLIED FOR ADJOURNMENTS OF HEARINGS BUT HE NEVER APPEARED BEFORE THE LD. CIT(A) DESPITE VARIOUS OPPORTUNITIES AND FINALLY ALL THESE APPEALS OF THE ASSESSEE WERE DISMISSED EX PARTE AND IN LIMINI FOR WANT OF REPRESENTATION AS WELL AS E-FILING OF THE APPEALS. THUS THE REASONS EXPLAINED BY THE ASSESSEE BY GIVING THE DETAILS ARE FOUND TO BE FACTUALLY CORRECT TO THE EXTENT OF THE AUTHORIZED REPRESENTATIVE OF THE ASSESSEE AND NON-APPEARANCE OF HIM BEFORE THE LD. CIT(A) DESPITE SIX OPPORTUNITIES WERE GIVEN BY THE LD. CIT(A). THE AUTHORIZED REPRESENTATIVE KEEP ON FILING THE ADJOURNMENT LETTERS BUT NEVER ATTENDED THE PROCEEDINGS. THEREFORE WE FIND THAT THERE IS NOTHING ON RECORD TO INDICATE THAT THE ASSESSEE HAS ACTED IN MALAFIDE OR ATTEMPTED TO TAKE ANY ADVANTAGE BY FILING THESE APPEALS BELATEDLY. IT IS ALSO MATTER OF FACT THAT THE BANK ACCOUNTS OF THE ASSESSEE WERE ATTACHED BY THE DEPARTMENT AND FURTHER INVENTORIES OF THE ASSESSEE WERE ALSO SEIZED AND LYING WITH THE DEPARTMENT. IN THOSE CIRCUMSTANCES THE REASONS EXPLAINED BY THE ASSESSEE ARE FOUND TO BE BONAFIDE AND NOT MALAFIDE. FURTHER SINCE THE LD. CIT(A) HAS NOT DECIDED THE APPEALS OF THE ASSESSEE ON MERITS BUT ALL THE APPEALS WERE DISMISSED IN LIMINI THEREFORE IN THESE FACTS AND ITA 417 TO 423/JP/2019_ SHRI RAJENDRA KR. AGARWAL VS ACIT 9 CIRCUMSTANCES WE FIND THAT THOUGH THERE ARE INORDINATE DELAY IN FILING THESE APPEALS BY THE ASSESSEE HOWEVER THE MATTERS OUGHT TO HAVE BEEN DECIDED ON MERITS BY THE LD. CIT(A) INSTEAD OF DISMISSING THE SAME IN LIMINI. ACCORDINGLY WE INCLINE TO CONDONE THE DELAY OF 204 DAYS IN FILING THE APPEALS FOR THE A.Y. 2008-09 TO 2012-13 AND DELAY OF 438 DAYS IN FILING THE APPEALS FOR THE A.Y. 2013-14 AND 2014-15 SUBJECT TO COST OF RS. 1 000/- (ONE THOUSAND) EACH APPEAL TOTAL AMOUNTING TO RS. 7 000/- (SEVEN THOUSAND). THE LD. CIT(A) HAS ALSO RAISED OBJECTION ABOUT NON- FILING OF THE APPEALS ELECTRONICALLY AS PER RULE 45 OF THE INCOME TAX RULES 1962 (IN SHORT THE RULES). HOWEVER IT IS ONLY DEFECT IN FILING THE APPEALS WHICH COULD BE REMOVED HENCE THE ASSESSEE IS DIRECTED TO REMOVE THE DEFECT IN FILING THE APPEALS BY FILING ELECTRONICALLY. FURTHER THERE WAS A DELAY OF SIX DAYS IN FILING THE APPEALS BEFORE THE LD. CIT(A) FOR THE A.Y. 2008-09 TO 2012-13 WHICH WAS NOT CONDONED BY THE LD. CIT(A) FOR WANT OF APPLICATION FOR CONDONATION OF DELAY. SINCE THE APPEAL OF THE ASSESSEE WERE OTHERWISE DISMISSED FOR WANT OF E-FILING THEREFORE IN THE FACTS OF THE CASE WE SET ASIDE ALL THESE APPEALS TO THE RECORD OF THE LD. CIT(A) FOR GRANTING ONE MORE OPPORTUNITY OF HEARING AS WELL AS TO EXPLAIN THE CAUSE OF DELAY OF SIX DAYS IN FILING THE APPEALS FOR THE A.Y. 2008-09 TO 2012-13. THE LD. CIT(A) SHALL TAKE A LENIENT VIEW FOR ITA 417 TO 423/JP/2019_ SHRI RAJENDRA KR. AGARWAL VS ACIT 10 CONDONATION OF DELAY OF SIX DAYS. THE APPEALS OF THE ASSESSEE MAY BE DECIDED AFRESH AFTER GIVING AN OPPORTUNITY OF HEARING TO THE ASSESSEE. 7. IN THE RESULT ALL THE SEVEN APPEALS OF THE ASSESSEE ARE ALLOWED FOR STATISTICAL PURPOSES ONLY. ORDER PRONOUNCED IN THE OPEN COURT ON 08 TH NOVEMBER 2019. SD/- SD/- FOE FLAG ;KNO FOT; IKY JKO (VIKRAM SINGH YADAV) (VIJAY PAL RAO) YS[KK LNL;@ ACCOUNTANT MEMBER U;KF;D LNL;@ JUDICIAL MEMBER TK;IQJ@ JAIPUR FNUKAD@ DATED:- 08 TH NOVEMBER 2019 *RANJAN VKNS'K DH IZFRFYFI VXZSFKR @ COPY OF THE ORDER FORWARDED TO: 1. VIHYKFKHZ @ THE APPELLANT- SHRI RAJENDRA KUMAR AGARWAL JAIPUR. 2. IZR;FKHZ @ THE RESPONDENT- THE A.C.I.T. CENTRAL CIRCLE-1 JAIPUR. 3. VK;DJ VK;QDR @ CIT 4. VK;DJ VK;QDRVIHY @ THE CIT(A) 5. FOHKKXH; IZFRFUF/K] VK;DJ VIHYH; VF/KDJ.K] T;IQJ @ DR ITAT JAIPUR 6. XKMZ QKBZY @ GUARD FILE (ITA NOS. 417 TO 423/JP/2019) VKNS'KKUQLKJ @ BY ORDER LGK;D IATHDKJ @ ASST. REGISTRAR