This is an application under article 226 of the Constitution of India upon the issue of a writ of prohibition restraining the respondent from calling upon the petitioner to file statements of assets and liabilities in pursuance of the notice issued to her.
The necessary facts are that the petitioner is an assessee for the assessment year 1962-63. During the course of the assessment year 1962-63 the respondent called upon the petitioner to file statements of all the assets and liabilities not included in the accounts in a pro-forma attached for 14 years ending 31st March of every year from 1949 to 1962. This letter was issued on January 24, 1964. This letter was sent under section 142 of the Income-tax Act, 1961 (hereinafter called the Act). It is contended by the petitioner that the respondent is not competent to ask for such material. It is on the other hand disputed by the respondent that he is competent to issue the letter and ask for the information in regard to the assessment which was pending.
Now, under section 142(1)(ii) of the Act, for the purpose of making an assessment, the Income-tax Officer may serve on any person who has made a return to 'to furnish in writing and verified in the prescribed manner information in such form and on such points or matter (including a statement of all assets and liabilities of the assessee, whether included in the accounts or not) as the Income-tax Officer may require'. This is a clear provision under which the Income-tax Officer not only informed the petitioner under what provisions of law he is demanding the material, but the petitioner is now informed that these statement were called for, for the purpose of the assessment of the year 1962-63, which was pending. It cannot therefore be validly argued that the Income-tax Officer was not competent to issue any such notice. How that material is going to be used is too premature to consider, as it will mean only speculation, which is not permissible. Since I find that the Income-tax Officer was competent to issue the notice, I find no force in this writ petition. This writ petition therefore is dismissed with costs.