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Ensuring Transparency in Income Tax Assessments – Bombay High Court Directs JAO To Provide Specific Information Relied Upon

Last Updated on November 15, 2023 by News Desk

Issue: The Section 148A(b) Notice The Bombay High Court is requesting detailed information on Section 148A(B) notices.

Details of the case: The Bombay High Court recently got involved in a disagreement over an income tax assessment, directing the Jurisdictional Assessing Officer (JAO) to provide some of the data that was used to issue a notice under Section 148A(B) of the Income Tax Act. In answer to a plea filed by Ganesh Ramesh Chavan, the court—which is made up of Justices K. R. Shriram and Neela Gokhale—took this decision.

Chavan challenged the assessment ruling and asked for further information about the justification for the notice sent out in accordance with Section 148A(B). At the point of sending a notice under Section 142(1) of the Income Tax Act, 1961, the petitioner and the Income Tax department indicated readiness to rescind the assessment decision and bring the case back before the JAO.

Parties’ Arguments: The department agreed to revoke the assessment decision and remand the case, provided that Chavan receives the accurate information and the necessary papers from the JAO within a fortnight. This information supported the claim that Chavan had paid Bhagwati Developer and its group in cash for Rs. 15,27,000. After receiving the required paperwork, Chavan promised to add to his response in a week.

Justification of the Decision: The court annulled the assessment ruling in accordance with the mutual agreement of the parties. The court gave Chavan a personal hearing and asked the JAO to provide a final decision, stressing the need for openness and a fair trial. The purpose of this step was to ensure a thorough investigation of the case and provide the petitioner the opportunity to refute the accusations in light of the particular evidence they had provided.

Verdict: In the Ganesh Ramesh Chavan v. Income Tax Officer case, the Bombay High Court ruled in Chavan’s favor, overturning the assessment decision and requesting that the JAO investigate the matter. The income tax assessment procedure is now more open and transparent thanks to the JAO’s mandated provision of specific evidence to Chavan in support of the Section 148A(B) notice. To ensure a prompt resolution, the court directed the JAO to conclude the matter by December 31, 2023, at the latest.

Case Title: Ganesh Ramesh Chavan Versus Income Tax Officer

Written By: Nikita Shankar @nikitaashankar

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