Non-Appearance before CIT (A) can be excused since Assessee is Senior Citizen and Computer Illiterate: ITAT [Read Order]

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The Delhi bench of the Income Tax Appellate Tribunal (ITAT) recently nullified an ex-parte order passed by the CIT (A) on the ground that the notices for appearances were sent through e-mail and the assessee, being a senior citizen and computer illiterate could not act accordingly.

The assessee is a HUF where Karta is the proprietor of M/s. Chunnu Fashions. The AO has passed an order in the name of M/s. Chunnu Fashions which was sustained by the first appellate authority without considering the arguments of the assessee. The assessee was aggrieved by an ex-order passed by the first appellate authority for want of appearance without disposing the case on merits.

The assessee contended that the notices were received through e-mail and he, being a senior citizen and do not have computer literacy, could not receive the same.

After considering the arguments and evidence, the Tribunal noted the fact that CIT(A) has sent three notices to the assessee through e-mail but the same was not complied with and therefore the appeal of the assessee was dismissed for non-prosecution.

Setting aside the order, the Tribunal observed that “In the total proceedings, the assessment order has never been framed on the correct persons i.e. BM Sarin HUF, but has been passed in the name of Chunnu Fashions. The Karta of the HUF, Mr. BM Sarin is more than 70 years old and has closed his business. The notices were sent through emails but the assessee being a senior citizen could not look into those emails. He is not computer literate and has no business as the business of the assessee was closed 5 years ago due to heavy losses. Therefore, there is a genuine reason for not appearing before the l,d CIT(A). It is also alarming that the assessment orders have been passed on non-existent party i.e. M/s. Chunnu Fashions does not exist at all. In fact the assessment order and the appellate orders should have been in the name of BM Sarin HUF. This fact also deserves to be looked into.”

To Read the full text of the Order CLICK HERE