High Court Of Allahabad
Manik Chand Gupta vs. CIT
Section 132(9) Art. 226
R.M. Sahai & Om Prakash, JJ.
Civil Misc. Writ Petn. No. 440 of 1988
17th February, 1988
BY THE COURT :
The petitioner, a commission agent, seeks a mandamus that the respondents be directed to permit him to take copies from his books of account, as mentioned in Annexure “A” to the Panchnama (Annexure “I” to the writ petition).
2. The contention of the petitioner is that he carries on commission agency business in potato in the premises of the firm, Sheetalaya Cold Storage, Gaddopur, Phaphamau, Allahabad, and during a search conducted on the premises of the aforesaid firm, the account books of the firm as well as the account books of the petitioner, which were lying in the firm’s premises at the time of search, were seized. It is averred in para. 24 of the petition that he was informed by the partners of the firm that respondent No. 2 is ready to permit the representative of the firm only to take the copies of the books of account on the condition that the partners admit in writing, before taking the copies, that all the books of account belonged to the firm.
3. Sub-s. (9) of s. 132 of the IT Act, 1961, provides that the person from whose custody any books of account are seized under sub-s. (1) and sub-s. (1A) may make copies thereof or take extracts therefrom in the presence of the authorised officer or any other person empowered by him in this behalf. So, the right of making copies and taking extracts from the account books is given only to the person from whose custody the books of account are seized. Admittedly, the petitioner is not a partner of the aforesaid firm, from whose premises the account books were seized and, therefore, the partners of the firm or their representatives duly authorised by them only, will be entitled to make copies and take extracts from the account books seized. Since the partners of the firm are entitled to make copies, no undertaking need be given by them that all the books seized during search belonged to them. The respondent No. 2 is, therefore, directed to permit the partners of the aforesaid firm or their representatives duly authorised by them to make copies of the seized account books, without requiring them to give an undertaking that all the seized books belonged to them.
4. With these observations, the writ petition is disposed of finally at the admission stage, without calling for a counter-affidavit.
[Citation : 173 ITR 662]