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Income Tax refund cannot be withheld without assigning any reason

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Court :
Calcutta High Court

Brief :
In Mcnally Bharat Engineering Company Limited and Anr. V Assistant Commissioner of The Income Tax, Circle 1(1) Kolkata And 6 Others [WPO 80 of 2020 decided on August 8, 2021], Mcnally Bharat Engineering Company Limited ('the Petitioner') filed a writ petition seeking refund of Rs. 20,14,56,936/- from Assistant Commissioner of The Income Tax ('the Respondent') who withheld the refund determined under Section 143(1) of the Income Tax Act, 1961 ('the IT Act') of the Petitioner for assessment year 2018-19 computed in accordance with provisions of Section 244A of the IT Act.

Citation :
Mcnally Bharat Engineering Company Limited and Anr. V Assistant Commissioner of The Income Tax, Circle 1(1) Kolkata And 6 Others [WPO 80 of 2020 decided on August 8, 2021]

In Mcnally Bharat Engineering Company Limited and Anr. V Assistant Commissioner of The Income Tax, Circle 1(1) Kolkata And 6 Others [WPO 80 of 2020 decided on August 8, 2021], Mcnally Bharat Engineering Company Limited ('the Petitioner') filed a writ petition seeking refund of Rs. 20,14,56,936/- from Assistant Commissioner of The Income Tax ('the Respondent') who withheld the refund determined under Section 143(1) of the Income Tax Act, 1961 ('the IT Act') of the Petitioner for assessment year 2018-19 computed in accordance with provisions of Section 244A of the IT Act.

The Petitioner contended that the Respondent withheld the refund as per provision of Section 241A of the IT Act, however, in order to invoke the same, the Respondent had to form an opinion that the grant of refund is likely to adversely affect the revenue which it failed to do so.

The Hon'ble High Court of Calcutta relying on a principle laid down in the judgment of Nazir Ahmad vs. King Emperor [AIR 1936 PC 253], which provided that 'if a statute provides an act to be done by a particular authority and in a particular manner, it should only be done by that authority and in that manner or not at all' noted that the Respondent acted arbitrarily by withholding the refund without assigning any reason though the statute mandates for recording the same.

Further, directed the Respondent to refund the amount of Rs. 20,14,56,936/- within a period of four weeks from date along with interest on the principal sum of Rs. 18,31,42,676 as per the provisions of the IT Act.

 

Bimal Jain
on 11 August 2021
Published in Income Tax
Views : 31
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