JAGANMOHAN REDDY, J. - This is an application under sub-section (3) of Section 66 of the Indian Income-tax Act alleging that the application filed before the Income-tax Appellate Tribunal at Bombay and presented to the Register, Commissioner of Income-tax at Hyderabad, was presented to a person authorised to receive memoranda of appeals and applications. It appears that the order of the Income-tax Appellate Tribunal was served on the assessee on April 18, 1951. He thereafter filed applications for reference to the High Court which were received by the Registrar of the above Tribunal, Bombay, on July 25, 1951, from the Registrar, Income-tax Commissioner, Hyderabad, to whom they were presented on June 16, 1951. The Income-tax Appellate Tribunal at Bombay has held that the applications were time-barred inasmuch as they were not presented within 60 days from the serving of the order. The assessee has now applied under sub-section (3) of Section 66 of the Act challenging the order of the Tribunal. Pleader for the assessee contends that the Registrar, Income-tax Commissioner at Hyderabad, was appointed by Notification of the Hyderabad Government dated March 22, 1949, made under the Hyderabad Income-tax Act to (1) receive memoranda of appeals, (2) issue receipts for the money received, and (3) note on the memorandum of appeal the date on which it was received. After the fiscal integration of Hyderabad State with the Union of India, the Indian Income-tax Acts and the Rules for governing the procedure of the Appellate Tribunal were made applicable by the Indian Finance Act of 1950 as and from 1st April, 1950. Under the rules governing the procedure of the Income-tax Appellate Tribunal, the Central Government is authorised to constitute Benches of the Tribunal and the Registrar of the Tribunal under clause (1) of Rule 7 of the said rules is authorised to receive memoranda of appeals and applications presented to the Tribunal.
After the application of the Indian Income-tax Act to the State of Hyderabad, the President of the Income-tax Appellate Tribunal issued Standing Order No. 1 of 1950 made in pursuance of Rule 4 of the Appellate Tribunal Rules, vesting the Bombay Bench with jurisdiction for the State of Hyderabad to hear appeals and applications under the Income-tax Act as and from 1st April, 1950. From the foregoing it is clear that the Registrar at Bombay was authorised to receive applications and memoranda of appeals and the act of the assessee either inadvertently or without properly canvassing the true position in filing his applications for reference before a person not authorised to receive them, cannot entitle him to claim exclusion of the period which is spent in transmission of the application between the date of presentation before the Registrar at Hyderabad and the date of receipt by the Registrar, Appellate Tribunal at Bombay, for purpose of computing limitation. After the Indian Income-tax Act together with the rules and the Standing Order No. 1 of 1950 were enforced, the notification of the Hyderabad government made under the Hyderabad Income-tax Act dated March 22, 1949, will be deemed to have been abrogated and there is no force in the contention of counsel for the assessee that since the assessment was being made under the Hyderabad Income-tax Act, the Registrar appointed thereunder as Registrar for the Income-tax Appellate Tribunal should be deemed to be the proper receiving authority. Once jurisdiction has been vested in the Tribunal constituted under the Indian Income-tax Act, the proper person to whom the appeal should have been presented was the Registrar of the Income-tax Appellate Tribunal at Bombay and not the Registrar of the Income-tax Commissioner at Hyderabad.
Counsel for the assessee has cited the case, Sri Popsing Rice Mills v.Commissioner of Income-tax, Bihar and Orissa, which is inapplicable to the facts of this case, as it is an authority for the proposition that where an assessee has sent a memorandum of appeal by post, the time occupied in transmission of the application should not be computed as part of the period of limitation of 60 days. Rule 7 of the Income-tax Appellate Tribunal Rules itself authorises the sending of memoranda of appeal by post addressed to the Registrar or to such other officer who is authorised by the Registrar to receive such memoranda. The assessee has presented his applications not to an authorised person but to an unauthorised person and he cannot claim to be entitled to the time spent in transmission of his application by the Registrar of the Income-tax Commissioner at Hyderabad to the Registrar of the Income-tax Appellate Tribunal at Bombay.
On a plain reading of sub-section (3) of Section 66 of the Income-tax Act, it is clear that there is no authority vested in the High Court to condone any delay or to give any benefit to the assessee if the order of the Tribunal is in accordance with law. Several cases have been cited before us by the respondents advocate, viz., Bansilal Gulabchand v. Commissioner of Income-tax, Bombay, (Mofussil), and Hajee Mahboob Bux Ehhan Illahi v. Commissioner of Income-tax, U. P., which support this view. In these cases it has been held that the Tribunal has no power to condone any delay in making the application under sub-section (1) of Section 66 and when the assessee applies to the High Court under sub-section (3) thereof, it is impossible for the High Court to say that in dismissing his application the Tribunal acted otherwise than correctly; nor has the High Court been given any power to consider whether there was sufficient cause for delay nor has it any power similar to the power under Section 5 of the Indian Limitation Act to condone the delay.
In the result, we agree with the observations of the Income-tax Appellate Tribunal that the assessee has been ill-advised but nothing can be done. The application is, therefore, rejected.