There is no concept of pre bargaining under Income Tax Act – ITAT dismisses delayed quantum appeal filed after initiation of penalty proceedings
ABCAUS Case Law Citation:
ABCAUS 2863 (2019) (04) ITAT
Important Case Laws Cited/relied upon by the parties
Collector, Land Acquisition v. Mst. Katiji  167 ITR 471
CIT vs West Bengal Infrastructure Development Finance Corporation Ltd. 334 ITR 269
The assessee had filed an appeal before the Tribunal with a delay of 696 days alongwith an application for condonation of delay along with affidavit.
In application filed by assessee, it was stated that assessee was advised of chances of getting relief in further appeal to be remote, in view of surrender made during assessment proceedings.
It was submitted that the assessee did not prefer appeal against quantum proceedings also for the reason that assessee had expected penalty proceedings will not be initiated against assesseee. However, subsequently penalty was levied on same issue for year under consideration and was decided against assessee.
It was further submitted that at that point of time, filing of appeal against quantum addition before the Tribunal was advised by the then Counsel who was familiar with Income Tax litigations. This caused the delay of 696 days.
Placing reliance upon decision of Hon’ble Supreme Court it was stated that the delay occurred due to lack of knowledge of assessee about intricacies of tax law.
The Tribunal opined that the reason cited by assessee in application for condonation of delay did not inspire any confidence. The reasoning for not filing appeal in quantum proceedings before the Tribunal, do not amount to be ‘sufficient cause’ in order to apply the decisions of the Hon’ble Supreme Court.
The Tribunal observed that apparently the assessee took conscious decision not to prefer appeal against quantum proceedings before this Tribunal. And also that, there is no concept of ‘pre bargaining’ under Income Tax Act.
The Tribunal opined that reasons shown by assessee, did not fall within parameters of sufficient cause so as to confer benefit of condonation of delay. Because, assessee took a well considered decision not to take up further proceedings against quantum order and therefore he did not approach any other litigating professional even after huge addition that was confirmed by CIT (A).
As a result, the ITAT dismissed condonation application.