Madras H.C : Whether the Tribunal is right in dismissing the appeal preferred by the Revenue without going into the merits of the case on the ground that the tax effect is less than Rs. 1,00,000 ?

High Court Of Madras

CIT vs. Hospital Superintendent, Government Head Quarters, Mettur Dam

Section 253(2)

Asst. Year 2002-03

K. Raviraja Pandian & P.P.S. Janarthana Raja, JJ.

Tax Case Appeal No. 579 of 2008

7th July, 2008

Counsel appeared :

T. Ravikumar, for the Department

JUDGMENT

K. Raviraja Pandian, J. :

The correctness of the order of the Tribunal dt. 19th May, 2006, made in ITA No. 1388/Mad/2005 is put in issue by formulating the following question of law :

“Whether the Tribunal is right in dismissing the appeal preferred by the Revenue without going into the merits of the case on the ground that the tax effect is less than Rs. 1,00,000 ?”

The relevant assessment year is 2002-03. For the said assessment year, the assessee did not file the annual return in time. There was a delay of 585 days in filing the appeal. The reason given by the assessee for not filing the return within the period prescribed is that the assessee-hospital was running short of necessary staff. Therefore, invoking s. 272A(2)(c) of the IT Act, the AO determined the penalty payable. Aggrieved by that, the assessee filed an appeal before the CIT(A), who reduced the same by 50 per cent, i.e., Rs. 5,850. Aggrieved by the same, the Department preferred an appeal before the Tribunal, which dismissed the same on the ground that the tax effect is less than Rs. 1,00,000 and it does not also fall within the exceptions provided for filing appeal before the Tribunal even where the tax effect is less than Rs. 1,00,000. Heard the learned counsel for the Revenue and perused the order of the Tribunal. An issue similar to the issue in this case came up for consideration before a Division Bench of this Court in the case of CWT vs. S. Annamalai (2003) 181 CTR (Mad) 450 : (2002) 258 ITR 675 (Mad), wherein it was held that in order to reduce the litigation for filing Departmental appeals/references before the Tribunal, High Courts and the Supreme Court, the CBDT, by Circular F. No. 279/126/98-IT, dt. 27th March, 2000, revised the monetary limits. However, the following should be contested irrespective of the Revenue effect: (i) where the Revenue audit objection in the case has been accepted by the Department, (ii) where the Board’s order, notification, instruction or circular is the subject-matter of an adverse order, (iii) where prosecution proceedings are contemplated against the assessee, and (iv) where the constitutional validity of the provisions of the Act are under challenge.

As stated earlier, the tax amount involved in this case is Rs. 5850. The Revenue has not made out any case to show that the case falls within the four exceptions provided in the Circular of the CBDT in F. No. 279/126/1998-IT, dt. 27th March, 2000. Hence, the appeal deserves to be dismissed. The Tribunal’s order requires no interference, for the foregoing reasons. The appeal is dismissed. No costs.

[Citation : 326 ITR 511]