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Lack of access to E-mail is a valid ground for condonation of delay


Last updated: 07 July 2023

Court :
ITAT, New Delhi

Brief :
The ITAT, New Delhi, in Mohammad Saleem v. ITO, Ward 63(3), New Delhi 110002 [ITA No.28/Del/2023 dated June 7, 2023] held that delay of 191 days in filing appeal before the ITAT due to the lack of access to e-mail resulting in non-communication of dismissal of appeal by CIT(A) is a sufficient cause to condonation of delay for filling appeal.

Citation :
ITA No.28/Del/2023 dated June 7, 2023

The ITAT, New Delhi, in Mohammad Saleem v. ITO, Ward 63(3), New Delhi 110002 [ITA No.28/Del/2023 dated June 7, 2023] held that delay of 191 days in filing appeal before the ITAT due to the lack of access to e-mail resulting in non-communication of dismissal of appeal by CIT(A) is a sufficient cause to condonation of delay for filling appeal.

Facts

Mohammad Saleem ("the Appellant") has limited education, earning income from running a government-run ration shop or food grains shop. The Appellant filled an appeal on January 03, 2023 against the order dated April 27, 2022 ("the Impugned Order") passed by the Commissioners of Income-Tax (Appeals) ("CIT(A)") for the Assessment Year 2011-12. 

The Appellant was required to file the Appeal on or before June 26, 2022. However, the Appellant was unaware of the dismissal of the appeal by the Ld. CIT(A). This lack of awareness was due to communication of the Impugned Order solely through email.

Unfortunately, the Appellant did not have access to email due to limited financial resources and a lack of knowledge in utilizing such technology.

The Appellant became aware of the dismissal of the first appeal upon receiving a penalty notice on October 18, 2022. Subsequently, recognizing the need to take action, the Appellant filed the appeal on January 3, 2023, with a delay of 191 days.

Issue

Whether delay of 191 days can be condoned on the ground that the Appellant has no access to E-mail?

Held

The ITAT, New Delhi, in ITA No.28/Del/2023 held as under:

  • Observed that, Revenue Department has not controverted that the order of lower authority was communicated to the Appellant through mail.
  • Noted that, where the Appellant, due to limited resources and lack of knowledge, did not have access to electronic communication, the delay of 191 days in discovering the dismissal of the appeal by the ld. CIT(A) can be considered a valid reason justifying the delay.
  • Held that, the delay is condoned and the appeal is admitted for hearing.
     
 
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Bimal Jain
Published in Income Tax
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