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Wealth-tax Officer Vs. Surinder Singh Bindra - Court Judgment

LegalCrystal Citation
CourtIncome Tax Appellate Tribunal ITAT Delhi
Decided On
Judge
Reported in(1983)3ITD463(Delhi)
AppellantWealth-tax Officer
RespondentSurinder Singh Bindra
Excerpt:
.....rule ibb of the wealth-tax rules, as elucidated by the delhi bench of the tribunal in the case of biju patnaik v. wto [1981] 6 taxman 56 (delhi-trib.).4. the revenue is aggrieved from the said finding. apart from the contention that the revenue had not finally accepted the tribunal's judgment in the case of biju patnaik (supra) and that some questions of law arising out of the said judgment stood referred to the high court, the revenue also contended that the tribunal's judgment in the case of biju patnaik (supra) is non est, inasmuch as the said judgment was given by a bench comprising three members and, according to the revenue, the president of the tribunal under the wealth-tax act had no power to constitute a bench of three members.5. so far as the aspect of pendency before the high.....
Judgment:
1 This appeal has been preferred by the revenue against order, dated 14-7-1981, of the AAC.2. 1974-75 is the assessment year concerned. 31-3-1974 is the corresponding valuation date. The assessee is an individual. The assessment was completed by the WTO as per order dated 13-3-1979 determining net wealth at Rs. 1,24,000. The said net wealth included the value of the assessee's one-third share in House No. 2/12, East Patel Nagar, New Delhi. The assessee had declared the value of said share at Rs. 67,466 on the strength of registered valuer's report. The WTO raised the estimate of value of said one-third share to Rs. 1 lakh.

|The WTO worked out the said figure by adopting land and building method of valuation instead of yield capitalisation method, as adopted by the registered valuer.

3. The assessee challenged the said finding of the WTO by way of appeal before the AAC. The AAC directed the WTO to re-estimate the value of the said asset in the light of provisions of Rule IBB of the Wealth-tax Rules, as elucidated by the Delhi Bench of the Tribunal in the case of Biju Patnaik v. WTO [1981] 6 Taxman 56 (Delhi-Trib.).

4. The revenue is aggrieved from the said finding. Apart from the contention that the revenue had not finally accepted the Tribunal's judgment in the case of Biju Patnaik (supra) and that some questions of law arising out of the said judgment stood referred to the High Court, the revenue also contended that the Tribunal's judgment in the case of Biju Patnaik (supra) is non est, inasmuch as the said judgment was given by a Bench comprising three members and, according to the revenue, the President of the Tribunal under the Wealth-tax Act had no power to constitute a Bench of three members.

5. So far as the aspect of pendency before the High Court in reference of legal questions arising out of the Tribunal's judgment in Biju Patnaik's case (supra) is concerned, that does not warrant a departure from the view taken by the Tribunal in the case of Biju Patnaik (supra).

6. So far as the question about invalid constitution of the Three Member Bench in the case of Biju Patnaik (supra) is concerned, there are two aspects. Firstly, it is not, in law, open to the revenue to challenge the validity of constitution of the said aforesaid Bench in the present case. Secondly, we find that the Three Member Bench in the case of Biju Patnaik (supra) was constituted by the President of the Tribunal in exercise of the powers available to him under Section 255(1) of the Income-tax Act, 1961 read with Section 24(11) of the Wealth-tax Act, 1957. Section 255(1) of the Income-tax Act runs as follows: The powers and functions of the Appellate Tribunal may be exercised and discharged by Benches constituted by the President of the Appellate Tribunal from among the members thereof.

7. Section 24(11) expressly provides that provisions of Sub-section (1) of Section 255 of the Income-tax Act are to apply to the Tribunal in the discharge of its functions under the Wealth-tax Act. The fact that Sub-section (3) of Section 255 of the Income-tax Act, is not one of the provisions mentioned in Section 24(11) of the Wealth-tax Act can lead to no infirmity in the constitution of the Three Member Bench in Biju Patnaik's case (supra), inasmuch as Sub-section (3) of Section 255 merely purports to remove to an extent the restriction contained in Section 255(2). Thus, when Section 255(2) of the Income-tax Act, is not one of the provisions mentioned in Section 24(11) of the Wealth-tax Act, non-mention of Section 255(3) in Section 24(11) is of no consequence. According to the revenue, the decision in CWT v. S. Baliah [1978] 114 ITR 858 (AP) has taken a contrary view. With profound respect to their Lordships, we are unable to agree with the reasoning that Section 255(2), even when not mentioned in said Section 24(11), should be taken to have been mentioned in that section. First portion of the definition in Article 2(iii) of the Income-tax (Appellate Tribunal) Articles, 1963 is complete by itself. The revenue fails.


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