Vishal Ashwin Patel vs Assistant Commissioner of Income Tax - Supreme Court Case

Vishal Ashwin Patel vs Assistant Commissioner of Income Tax - Supreme Court Case

Landmark Cases of India / सुप्रीम कोर्ट के ऐतिहासिक फैसले


REPORTABLE
IN THE SUPREME COURT OF INDIA
CIVIL APPELLATE JURISDICTION
CIVIL APPEAL NO. 2200 OF 2022
Vishal Ashwin Patel           ..Appellant (S)
Versus
Assistant Commissioner of Income Tax                ..Respondent (S)
Circle 25(3) & Ors.
With 
CIVIL APPEAL NO. 2201 OF 2022
With 
CIVIL APPEAL NO. 2202 OF 2022
With 
CIVIL APPEAL NO. 2203 OF 2022
J U D G M E N T 
M. R. Shah, J.
1. Feeling   aggrieved   and   dissatisfied   with   the   impugned
orders passed by the High Court of Judicature at Bombay
in Writ Petitions Nos. 3209/2019, 3150/2019, 3208/2019
and 3137/2019, by which the Division Bench of the High
1
Court has dismissed the said writ petitions in which the
appellants herein – original writ petitioners challenged the
reopening of the assessment/re­assessment proceedings,
the   original   writ   petitioners   have   preferred   the   present
appeals.
  
2. We   have   heard   Shri   Devendra   Jain,   learned   counsel
appearing on behalf of the respective appellants and Shri
Balbir   Singh,   learned   ASG   appearing   on   behalf   of   the
Revenue.   We   have   gone   through   the   respective   orders
passed by the High Court dismissing the writ petitions.
Having gone through the orders passed by the High Court
dismissing the writ petitions, it can be seen that the said
orders are cryptic, non­speaking and non­reasoned orders.
The order dated 11.01.2022 reads as under: ­
“1. We are not inclined to entertain this petition. At the same
time, the Assessing Officer who will be different from the
officer who had pass the order dated 10th October, 2019
rejecting   the   objections   filed   by   petitioner   for   re­opening
under Section 148 of the Income Tax Act, 1961 (the Act)
shall permit petitioner to file further documents and case
laws if adviced and also grant a personal hearing before
passing the assessment order. The assessment order to be
passed within 12 weeks from the date this order is uploaded.
Petitioner shall be given atleast seven days advance notice
about the date and time of the personal hearing.
2. The Assessing Officer shall deal with all the submissions
made by petitioner including those raised in his objections to
2
the re­opening and pass detailed order in accordance with
law. “ 
From the writ petitions produced on record, it appears
that the reopening of the assessment under Section 148 of
the Income Tax Act has been challenged on a number of
grounds. None of the grounds raised in the writ petitions
has been dealt with and/or considered by the High Court
on merits. There is no discussion at all on any of the
grounds raised in the writ petitions. The Division Bench of
the High Court has dismissed the writ petitions in a most
casual manner which is unsustainable. Except stating that
‘we  are  not   inclined  to   entertain   writ  petition’,  nothing
further has been stated by the High Court giving reasons
for the disinclination to entertain the writ petitions. 
2.1 The manner in which the High Court has dealt with and
disposed   of   the   writ   petitions   without   passing   any
reasoned order is not appreciated by this Court. When a
number   of   issues/grounds   were   raised   in   the   writ
petitions, it was the duty cast upon the court to deal with
the same and thereafter, to pass a reasoned order. When
the Constitution confers on the High Courts the power to
3
give relief it becomes the duty of the Courts to give such
relief in appropriate cases and the Courts would be failing
to perform their duty if relief is refused without adequate
reasons.
      
2.2 The High Court in exercise of powers under Article 226 of
the   Constitution   of   India   was   required   to   have
independently   considered   whether   the   question   of
reopening   of   the  assessment   could   be   raised   in  a  writ
petition and if so, whether it was justified or not. 
2.3 While emphasising the necessity to pass a reasoned order,
in   the   case   of  Central   Board   of   Trustees   Vs.   Indore
Composite   Private   Limited,   (2018)   8   SCC   443,  it   is
observed and held by this Court that the courts need to
pass a reasoned order in every case which must contain
the narration of the bare facts of the case of the parties to
the lis, the issues arising in the case, the submissions
urged by the parties, the legal principles applicable to the
issues involved and the reasons in support of the findings
on all the issues arising in the case and urged by the
learned counsel for the parties in support of its conclusion.
4
It is further observed in the said decision that an order
bereft of reasoning causes prejudice to the parties because
it deprives them to know the reasons as to why one party
has won and other has lost. 
2.4 In the recent decision in the case of Union Public Service
Commission Vs. Bibhu Prasad Sarangi and Ors., (2021)
4 SCC 516, while emphasising the reasons to be given by
the High Court while exercising powers under Article 226
of the Constitution of India, it is observed and held by this
Court   that   the   reasons   constitute   the   soul   of   judicial
decision and how Judges communicate in their judgment
is a defining characteristic of judicial process since quality
of justice brings legitimacy to the judiciary. It is further
observed   that   though   statistics   of   disposal   of   cases   is
important   of   higher   value   is   the   intrinsic   content   of
judgment. It is further observed that in exercise of powers
under   Article   226   the   courts   require   to   independently
consider the issues involved. 
5
3. Applying   the   law   laid   by   this   Court   in   the   aforesaid
decisions to the facts of the case on hand and the manner
in which the High Court has disposed of the writ petitions,
in   the   interest   of   sobriety,   we   may   only   note   that   the
orders are bereft of reasoning as diverse grounds were
urged/raised   by   the   parties   which   ought   to   have   been
examined by the High Court in the first place and a clear
finding was required to be recorded upon analysing the
relevant documents. 
4. Since we cannot countenance the manner in which the
orders have been passed by the High Court which has
compelled us to remand the matter to the High Court for
deciding the writ petitions afresh on merits, we do so in
light of the aforesaid observations. 
5. In light of the foregoing discussion, we allow the present
appeals and set aside the impugned orders passed by the
High Court and remand the matters to the Division Bench
of the High Court for deciding the writ petitions afresh in
accordance   with   law,   keeping   in   view   our   observations
6
made  supra.  We,  however, make  it  clear  that   we  have
refrained from making any observation on merits of the
controversy,   having   formed   an   opinion   to   remand   the
cases to the High Court only for the reasons mentioned
above. The High Court would, therefore, decide the writ
petitions, bearing in mind our observations made above,
strictly in accordance with law. 
With   the   above   directions,   the   present   appeals   are
accordingly allowed and the impugned orders are set aside.
The matters are remanded to the High Court as aforesaid.
No costs.            
…………………………………J.
                (M. R. SHAH)
…………………………………J.
 (B.V. NAGARATHNA)
New Delhi, 
March 28th 2022.
7

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

संविधान की प्रमुख विशेषताओं का उल्लेख | Characteristics of the Constitution of India

100 Questions on Indian Constitution for UPSC 2020 Pre Exam

भारतीय संविधान से संबंधित 100 महत्वपूर्ण प्रश्न उतर