Essar Communications Limited v. Union of India & Ors
[Citation -2019-LL-1219-69]

Citation 2019-LL-1219-69
Appellant Name Essar Communications Limited
Respondent Name Union of India & Ors.
Court HIGH COURT OF DELHI AT NEW DELHI
Relevant Act Income-tax
Date of Order 19/12/2019
Judgment View Judgment
Keyword Tags assessment proceedings • assessment order • double taxation • advance ruling
Bot Summary: Mr. Datar, learned senior counsel for the petitioner submits that consequent upon the issuance of the impugned order dated 10.10.2019 by the Authority for Advance Ruling in AAR 1373 and 1374 of 2012, the Assessing Officer has issued notices dated 23.10.2019 and 05.12.2019 for the purpose of carrying out the assessment. He expresses an apprehension that the AO would feel bound by the prima facie findings returned by the Authority for Advance Ruling in relation to the alleged tax avoidance. We make it clear that on a reading of the impugned order passed by the said authority, it is evident that the said findings are only prima facie, which means, that they are not final and binding, and that they have not been arrived at after detailed examination of the materials placed before the authority or upon consideration of the rival submissions. We also make it clear that we have not ourselves examined the merits of the said prima facie findings returned by the authority on the aspect of the tax avoidance. Mr. Bhatia, Sr. standing counsel who appears on advance notice states that assessment gets time barred on 31st December, 2020. In view of the aforesaid, we hope and expect that the AO would expedite the assessment proceedings and would pass the assessment order preferably, on or before, 30.06.2020, subject to the petitioner co-operating in the assessment proceedings and not taking any adjournments. In view of the above, the petitions stand disposed of.


IN HIGH COURT OF DELHI AT NEW DELHI W.P.(C) 13401/2019 ESSAR COMMUNICATIONS LIMITED ..... Petitioner Through: Mr. Arvind Datar, Sr. Adv. with Mr.Atul Shankar Mathur, Mr. Prabal Mehrotra and Mr.Swapnil Tripathi, Advs. versus UNION OF INDIA & ORS. ..... Respondents Through: Ms. Sunny Shangloo, Govt. Pleader with Mr. Shubham Gandhi, Adv. Mr. Ruchir Bhatia, Sr. Standing counsel for Income Tax with Ms. Madhura Chandra and Mr.Shlok Chandra, Jr. Standing counsels. + W.P.(C) 13405/2019 ESSAR COM LIMITED ..... Petitioner Through: Mr. Arvind Datar, Sr. Adv. with Mr.Atul Shankar Mathur, Mr. Prabal Mehrotra and Mr.Swapnil Tripathi, Advs. versus UNION OF INDIA & ORS. ..... Respondents Through: Ms. Sunny Shangloo, Govt. Pleader with Mr. Shubham Gandhi, Adv. Mr. Ruchir Bhatia, Sr. Standing counsel for Income Tax with Ms. Madhura Chandra and Mr.Shlok Chandra, Jr. Standing counsels. Ms. Shiva Lakshmi, CGSC. CORAM: HON'BLE MR. JUSTICE VIPIN SANGHI HON'BLE MR. JUSTICE SANJEEV NARULA ORDER % 19.12.2019 CM APPL. 54402/2019 in W.P.(C) 13401/2019 & CM APPL. 54409/2019 in W.P.(C) 13405/2019 (exemptions) 1. Exemptions allowed, subject to all just exceptions. 2. applications stand disposed of. CM APPL. 54401/2019 in W.P.(C) 13401/2019 & CM APPL. 54408/2019 in W.P.(C) 13405/2019 3. By these applications, applicant seeks permission to file additional documents on record. Accordingly, applications are allowed and additional documents are taken on record. W.P.(C) 13401/2019 & W.P.(C) 13405/2019 4. Mr. Datar, learned senior counsel for petitioner submits that consequent upon issuance of impugned order dated 10.10.2019 by Authority for Advance Ruling (Income Tax) in AAR 1373 and 1374 of 2012, Assessing Officer (AO) has issued notices dated 23.10.2019 and 05.12.2019 for purpose of carrying out assessment. He submits that that petitioner is willing to join assessment proceedings. He, however, expresses apprehension that AO would feel bound by prima facie findings returned by Authority for Advance Ruling in relation to alleged tax avoidance. 5. We make it clear that on reading of impugned order passed by said authority, it is evident that said findings are only prima facie, which means, that they are not final and binding, and that they have not been arrived at after detailed examination of materials placed before authority or upon consideration of rival submissions. 6. Thus, it shall be open to AO and other statutory authorities to arrive at their own findings upon appreciation of evidence and materials placed on record and they should be not bound by prima facie findings. While so observing, we also make it clear that we have not ourselves examined merits of said prima facie findings returned by authority on aspect of tax avoidance. 7. Mr. Datar, submits that issue that remains to be determined is whether petitioner would be entitled to benefit of Indian-Mauritius Double Taxation Avoidance Treaty, and consequently to refund of tax deducted and paid by purchaser of shares in year 2011. He, therefore, submits that assessment proceedings may be expedited. 8. Mr. Bhatia, Sr. standing counsel who appears on advance notice states that assessment gets time barred on 31st December, 2020. In view of aforesaid, we hope and expect that AO would expedite assessment proceedings and would pass assessment order preferably, on or before, 30.06.2020, subject to petitioner co-operating in assessment proceedings and not taking any adjournments. 9. In view of above, petitions stand disposed of. VIPIN SANGHI, J SANJEEV NARULA, J DECEMBER 19, 2019 Pallavi Essar Communications Limited v. Union of India & Or
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