Faceless Assessment quashed, no password sent to join video conferencing

Faceless Assessment order quashed as no password was sent in the link to join video conferencing for the hearing

ABCAUS Case Law Citation
ABCAUS 3563 (2021) (11) HC

In the instant case, the assessee had wiled a Writ Petition to challenge the faceless assessment order passed under Section 143(3) read with Section 144B of the Income Tax Act, 1961 (the Act) by National Faceless Assessment Centre (NFAC).

The principal submission of the Petitioner assessee was that he did not receive the password in the link sent to him for joining the video conference on the last date of the hearing of the assessment. Being aggrieved, the assessee immediately sent an E-mail, within 20 minutes of the appointed time, voicing its grievance.

The case of the assessee was that the impugned assessment order had been passed in complete negation of the essential principle of natural justice without considering the said mail.

On query from the bench, the Department admitted that apparently the password had remained from being sent to the petitioner.

In view of the above, the Hon’ble High Court held that the petitioner was deprived of the opportunity of hearing owing to the technical error on part of the revenue authorities.

The Hon’ble High Court said that the opportunity of personal hearing in the context of the assessment order is a sine qua non. That opportunity had been denied.

The Hon’ble High Court held that the impugned order could not be sustained and it accordingly set aside it and remitted to the Income Tax Department to pass a fresh order.

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