AO Apologize For Illegal Tax Recovery And Promise To Abide By The Law: ITAT Spares Them From Contempt Action

Illegal Tax Recovery

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Greater Mohali Area Development Authority vs. DCIT (ITAT Chandigarh)

It is painful to note that the Dept officials in order to achieve targets at the close of the FY not only are tempted to ignore the principles of law and natural justice but cross their limits, in complete violation of the orders issued by judicial authorities. They are pressurised by higher officials to do so and they have to choose the lesser risky option of the two i.e. either to face the departmental action for not achieving targets or to face contempt proceedings. They choose the later option because perhaps they think that courts will not opt for strict view in case the amount coercively recovered is refunded after passing of the cut off date i.e. 31st March, and an apology tendered to the Court

Despite severe structures and directions of the Tribunal against the departmental officials passed vide order dated 20.12.2017, which was not only very much in the knowledge of not only of the concerned officials who had done the coercive act of recovery from the assessee but also to the senior officials of the Department. The concerned Principal Commissioner of Income Tax herself had come present to argue the matter in the Stay Application on 29.11.2017 along with departmental representatives and the concerned Assessing officer leading to order dated 20.12.2107. Under the circumstances, it cannot be said that the illegal recovery, even despite strict directions of the Tribunal, has been made by the Assessing officer without the knowledge of the higher officials

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