No Evidence for Website Glitches: Kerala HC upholds Dismissal of Income Tax Appeal with Huge Delay of 115 days [Read Order]

A Single Bench of the Kerala High Court upheld the dismissal of an income tax appeal for failure to produce evidence to condone the delay of 115 days. The present writ petition has been filed impugning the order passed in statutory appeal by the Commissioner of Income Tax (Appeals), Thrissur against the assessment order in respect of the assessment year 2016-17.

The Assessing Officers had added Rs. 60,00,000/- to the Income from business as returned Rs. 20,99,452/- and gross income has been determined to be Rs. 80,99,452/-. The petitioner/assessee had filed the appeal on 21.05.2019 against the assessment order dated 28.12.2018. The appeal was filed with a delay of 115 days. The only reason for filing the appeal with delay was given is ‘website problem’. The assessment order and demand notices were duly served on the petitioner on 28.12.2018 itself. The Appellate Authority found the reasons for filing the appeal with the huge delay of 115 days was not convincing. The petitioner failed to provide any evidence to the said reason (website problem). It was noted that, “The petitioner was issued several notices affording opportunity of hearing. The notices issued on 03.11.2022, 15.06.2023, 07.09.2023, 12.09.2023, 05.10.2023 and 25.10.2023 have been mentioned in the impugned order, which remained unreplied and unanswered.”

The Bench of Justice Dinesh Kumar Singh observed that, “Considering the conduct of the petitioner and the reason given for filing the appeal with delay i.e. ‘website problem’, the Commissioner of Appeal has dismissed the appeal on the ground of delay. It was observed that, “This Court does not find that there has been violation of the principles of natural justice as contended by the learned Counsel for the petitioner nor the orders suffers from any manifest infirmity or illegality which requires this Court to interfere with the appellate order passed by the 1st respondent.” Thus, finding no merit in the petition, the same was dismissed.

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