Sambasiva Rao, C.J.
1. On hearing the learned counsel for the petitioner, we thought that the writ petition can straightaway be disposed of finally. That is why we have called upon Sri Polavarapu Rama Rao, standing counsel for the revenue, to argue the matter on behalf of the revenue, which he has done. Now, we have had the benefit of hearing both sides.
2. The assessee to income-tax had filed this writ petition, seeking a mandamus declaring the order of the CIT, Andhra Pradesh-III, Hyderabad, in his proceedings dated March 25, 1978, null and void and to direct the IAC, Range-Ill, Hyderabad, and the ITO, D-Ward, Circle-Ill, Hyderabad, to consider the applications dated December 20, 1974, July 21, 1978, and July 21, 1978, filed by him and which are pending before the respondent Nos. 2 and 3.
3. The facts are simple. Penal interest had been levied on the assessee for the assessment years 1968-69, 1969-70 and 1970-71 and were completed on March 27, 1972, March 27, 1972, and January 21, 1973, respectively. Varying amounts of penal interest were levied on the assessee in respect of those three years. The assessee himself mistakenly preferred a revision to the CIT, Andhra Pradesh-III, Hyderabad, under Section 273A of the I.T. Act. Why we have stated that he has mistakenly chosen the remedy is that the above provision was inserted by the Taxation Laws (Amendment) Act, 1974, with effect from October 1, 1975. We have already noted that the penal interest had been levied much earlier. Consequently, the Commissioner did not have any jurisdiction to deal with the matter under Section 273A of the Act.
4. However, the assessee had also filed applications before the second and third respondents for making fresh assessments and they are now pending. Realising the wrong remedy which he had adopted, under Section 273A, the present writ petition has been filed by the petitioner for the relief which we have already indicated above.
5. It is indisputable that the Commissioner had no jurisdiction to deal with the matter under Section 273A, because the power was conferred on him much after the impugned penal interests were imposed on the assessee. Therefore, the order of the Commissioner, which is now sought to be questioned, has no legal force since it has been made without jurisdiction. As the assessee-petitioner himself stated that his applications are now pending before the IAC and the ITO, we direct those officers, who are respondents Nos. 2 and 3 in this writ petition, to dispose of those applications before them on merits and in accordance with law, without in any way being influenced by the observations or conclusions made or arrived at by the Commissioner in the impugned order.
6. This disposes of the writ petition. There will be no order as to costs.
7. Now that the main writ petition itself is disposed of, no further orders need be passed on the interlocutory application.