Failure to serve Reference upon the respondent implies the non-interest of applicant in persuing the same: Bombay HC [Read Order]

Business Income - Bombay High Court 2 - Tax Scan

The division bench of the Bombay High Court has recently refused to entertain a Reference by holding that the failure on part of the applicant to serve Reference upon the respondent as required under Rule 658 of the Bombay High Court Rules, means that the applicant is not interested in persuing the same.

The Rule 658 of the Bombay High Court (Original Side) Rules states that the party at whose instance a Reference has been made to this Court is required to take all such steps as are necessary to have a notice issued and served upon the opposite party within two months from the receipt of notice of the Reference from the High Court.In the instant case, the Reference was made before the High Court under Section 256(1)of the Income Tax Act, 1961 by the Income Tax Appellate Tribunal, seeking the opinion of the Court on the questions of law framed by it.The assessee maintained that he is not in a possession of evidence to show that the Reference has been served upon the Revenue.

While rejecting the same, the Court observed that “In view of the fact that the applicant-assessee has no evidence of having served the Reference upon the Respondent-Revenue, we are not inclined to examine the questions of law as raised for our opinion at the instance of the applicant-assessee. Mr. Ravi Rattesar states that he has now served the Respondent-Revenue and would request that the Reference be taken up for disposal. This Reference pertains to the year 2000 relating to A.Y. 198586. This non-compliance with the requirement of service for over sixteen years is itself an indication of the applicant not being serious about pursuing this Reference. Thus we decline to extend time. In the above view, the Reference is returned unanswered.”

Read the order here.