Whether an expenditure is capital or revenue squarely fall within the ambit of a debatable issue. Penalty u/s 271(1)(c) deleted
ABACUS Case Law Citation
ABCAUS 3379 (2020) (08) ITAT
Important case law relied upon by the parties:
CIT vs. Vegan International Ltd. 2 Taxmann.com 140
In the instant case, the assessee had challenged the order passed by the Commissioner of Income Tax (Appeals) in confirming penalty u/s 271(1)(c) of the Income Tax Act, 1961 (the Act) in respect of disallowance of business promotion expenses.
The appellant assessee had claimed business promotion expenses as revenue expenditure. However, according to the Assessing Officer (AO) those expenses were in the nature of capital expenditure.
Not agreeing with the submissions of the assessee, the AO treated business promotion expenses as capital expenditure and disallowed the same.
This disallowance was ultimately sustained by the Tribunal in the quantum appellate proceedings.
Meantime the AO initiated penalty proceedings u/s 271(1)(c) of the Act and issued notice u/s 274 of the Act and finally levied the penalty.
The CIT(A) sustained the penalty imposed by the AO.
Aggrieved with the order of the CIT(A), the assessee approached the Appellate Tribunal.
The Tribunal observed that the issue in dispute was whether the particular expenditure was capital or revenue in nature. According to the Tribunal, the issue whether the particular expenditure is capital or revenue in nature would squarely fall within the ambit of a debatable issue.
The Tribunal pointed out that the law is very well now settled that on a debatable issue, no penalty u/s 271(1)(c) of the Act could be levied.
Relying upon the judgment of the Hon’ble High Court, the Tribunal directed the Assessing Officer to delete the penalty imposed u/s 271(1)(c) of the Act in respect of disallowance of business promotion expenses.
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