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S. K. Veeraraghavan Vs. Commissioner of Income-tax, Madras. - Court Judgment

LegalCrystal Citation
SubjectDirect Taxation
CourtChennai High Court
Decided On
Case NumberCivil Revision Petitions Nos. 737 and 738 of 1964
Reported in[1969]71ITR823(Mad)
AppellantS. K. Veeraraghavan
RespondentCommissioner of Income-tax, Madras.
Cases ReferredDwarka Nath v. Income
Excerpt:
- .....revision petitions under article 227 of the constitution of india. they are directed against the orders of the commissioner of income-tax declining to interfere under section 33a(2) of the income-tax act, 1922, with the inclusion by the income-tax officer of two sums in the total income for the assessment years 1958-59 and 1959-60. the commissioner in so declining to interfere mentioned two reasons. one was that the petitioner himself in a letter of his dated february 25, 1961, had admitted that there would be additional profits accrued to him in the assessment years to the extent added to the total income. the other was, though the petitioner had preferred appeals against the orders of the income-tax officer, they did not extend to the inclusion of the two amounts. the appeal were.....
Judgment:

VEERASWAMI J. - These are civil revision petitions under article 227 of the Constitution of India. They are directed against the orders of the Commissioner of Income-tax declining to interfere under section 33A(2) of the Income-tax Act, 1922, with the inclusion by the Income-tax Officer of two sums in the total income for the assessment years 1958-59 and 1959-60. The Commissioner in so declining to interfere mentioned two reasons. One was that the petitioner himself in a letter of his dated February 25, 1961, had admitted that there would be additional profits accrued to him in the assessment years to the extent added to the total income. The other was, though the petitioner had preferred appeals against the orders of the Income-tax Officer, they did not extend to the inclusion of the two amounts. The appeal were allowed and the Income-tax Officer was directed to proceed afresh. But the Commissioner thought that this would make no difference to the result of the petitions under section 33A(2).

The jurisdiction under article 227 of the Constitution is a very extraordinary one and has to be resorted to only sparingly. It is not to be resorted to as a substitute for revisional jurisdiction. The jurisdiction under article 227 of the Constitution is a supervisory one and is not available where subordinate authorities in discharge of their judicial or quasi-judicial functions act within their jurisdiction but make otherwise erroneous orders. Even errors of jurisdiction may not normally be within the purview of article 227 of the Constitution. The petitions before us would not, therefore, be properly entertained under article 227 of the Constitution. Apparently, the petitioner, when he filed the revision petitions, mistakently thought that article 226 of the Constitution would not be available. In the particular circumstances of the case, we are satisfied that the revision petitions may be treated as petitions under article 226 of the Constitution to quash the orders of the Commissioner.

It appears the petitioner requested the Commissioner to give a hearing to him or his counsel before disposing of the petitions under section 33A(2). But it is not in controversy before us that the Commissioner failed to give the petitioner that opportunity. That, we think, clearly vitiates his orders. Dwarka Nath v. Income-tax Officer held that prima facie the jurisdiction conferred under the section is a judicial one, that the order brought before the Commissioner under that provision affects the rights of the assessee and that it was, therefore, implicit in revisional jurisdiction that the revising authority should give an opportunity to the parties affects to put forward their case in the manner prescribed. Our attention has not been invited to any prescription in this regard. But all the same, the jurisdiction of the Commissioner being quasi-judicial in character, it is but right that the petitioner is given an opportunity to put forward his case, which includes hearing of the petitioner, more especially when the order of the income-tax authority affects his rights.

On that view, the petitions, treating them, as we said, to be under article 226 of the Constitution, are allowed and the orders of the Commissioner are quashed. He will be at liberty to dispose of the petitions afresh. No costs.


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