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Shalini Goyal, ]44, Engineers Enclave, Pitampura, Delhi. Vs. ACIT, Central Circle-5, New Delhi.
June, 23rd 2014
              DELHI BENCHES : G : NEW DELHI


                     ITA No.4314/Del/2013
                   Assessment Year : 2009-10

Shalini Goyal,               Vs.   ACIT,
]44, Engineers Enclave,            Central Circle-5,
Pitampura,                         New Delhi.


                ITA No.4315 to 4320/Del/2013
            Assessment Years : 2004-05 to 2009-10

                ITA No.4321 to 4324/Del/2013
            Assessment Years : 2004-05 to 2007-08

         ITA No.4326, 4325 & 4327 to 4332/Del/2013
  Assessment Years : 2008-09 , 2009-10 & 2005-06 to 2010-11

Sawarmal Goyal,              Vs.   ACIT,
]44, Engineers Enclave,            Central Circle-5,
Pitampura,                         New Delhi.


  (Appellant)                         (Respondent)

           Assessee By        : Shri Ajay Mittal, CA
           Department By      : Smt. Shalini Verma, Sr.DR
                                              ITA Nos.4314 to 4332/Del/2013



     This bunch of 19 files involve two assessees in respect of

whom penalty has been imposed u/s 271(1)(b) of the Income-tax

Act, 1961 (`the Act' for short) in relation to the assessment years

2004-05 to 2010-11.

2.   Since common issue is raised in all these appeals, we are

proceeding to dispose them off by this consolidated order for the

sake of convenience.

3. On a representative basis, we are taking up the appeal in the

case of Shalini Goyal for the Assessment year 2009-10 in ITA

No.4314/Del/2013.     The facts apropos this appeal are that the

assessee was subjected to search and seizure proceedings along

with other individuals and group concerns on 7.01.2010. Notice

u/s 153A was issued requesting to file the return for the

Assessment Year 2009-10 on 08.11.2010. Thereafter, notice u/s

142(1) was issued on 16.12.2010 calling for certain information.

No return/reply was submitted by the assessee. On 16.09.2011, a

notice u/s 271(1)(b) was issued requiring the assessee to show

reasons as to why penalty be not imposed under this section. A
                                               ITA Nos.4314 to 4332/Del/2013

reply was submitted to the effect that all the staff members and

the concerned persons were occupied in finalization of books of

account for the Financial year 2010-11 as income tax return for

AY 2011-12 was to be filed on 30.09.2011. The assessee further

stated that the delay on the part of the assessee in filing the

return/documents was unintentional.          The assessee further

requested for grant of time of 15/20 days for doing the needful.

Not convinced with the assessee's submissions, the AO imposed

penalty u/s 271(1)(b) amounting to ` 10,000/-.        The ld. CIT(A)

upheld the penalty.

4.     We have heard the rival submissions and perused the

relevant material on record. It is noticed from the impugned order

that   the   assessee   submitted   before   the   ld.    CIT(A)      that

adjournments were requested on the ground that search and

seizure operation had taken place and it was not possible to

furnish the necessary details as all the documents and computer

hard discs etc. were seized/impounded at the time of search

operations. The assessee further submitted that several requests

were made to the AO to release certain documents, but to no

avail. These findings have not been controverted by the ld. DR
                                                ITA Nos.4314 to 4332/Del/2013

with any cogent evidence. From the above recording of the

factual position obtaining in this case, it is crystal clear that the

assessee was prevented by a reasonable cause in not complying

with the directions of the AO which led to the imposition of

penalty u/s 271(1)(b) of the Act.

5.    Here, it is relevant to mention that the provisions of the

section 271(1)(b) of the Act imposing penalty are not absolute.

Section 273B provides that where the assessee shows a

reasonable cause for the default which led to the imposition of

penalty, in such cases, the penalty can be deleted. It is noticed

that section 271(1)(b) of the Act is duly covered within the ambit

of section 273B. In our considered opinion, the cause pleaded by

the assessee before the ld. CIT(A) which led to the commission of

default u/s 271(1)(b) of the Act constituted a reasonable cause.

The delay in filing the information/documents etc. called for by

the AO would be naturally delayed when a person has been

subjected to search and documents are with the Department. As

the assessee proved a reasonable cause for failure to comply with

the directions of the AO which culminated into the imposition of

the instant penalty, we are of the considered opinion that this
                                                         ITA Nos.4314 to 4332/Del/2013

penalty cannot be upheld. We, therefore, set aside the impugned

order and order for deletion of this penalty.

6.        The   facts   and   circumstances   in   all     other      cases      are

admittedly, mutatis mutandis similar to those of Shalini Goyal,

which has been discussed, supra.              Following the view taken

hereinabove, we order for the deletion of the penalty in other

cases as well.

7.        In the result, all the appeals are allowed.

          The order pronounced in the open court on 20.06.2014.

                Sd/-                                              Sd/-

       [C.M. GARG]                                     [R.S. SYAL]
     JUDICIAL MEMBER                               ACCOUNTANT MEMBER

Dated, 20th June, 2014.


Copy forwarded to:

     1.   Appellant
     2.   Respondent
     3.   CIT
     4.   CIT (A)
     5.   DR, ITAT

                                                   AR, ITAT, NEW DELHI.*

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