However, a division bench headed by Justice PS Dinesh Kumar noted that two transactions pertaining to RAL have been decided by the Income Tax Appellate Tribunal (ITAT) holding that the assessing officer had not discharged his burden to prove that the assessee was a beneficial owner of RAL.
“Proceedings under Black Money Act entail serious civil and criminal consequences. The two transactions show that there is no proper application of mind both at the stage of sending the information by then I-T department and by the authorities under Black Money Act before issuing the notice under challenge,” the bench said. “It is also relevant to note that the search was conducted in 2015.
ITAT decided the appeal on July 30, 2021, the I-T department sent the information on August 6, 2021 and the impugned notice was issued on August 11, 2021. These dates lead to an inference that the department sent the information hurriedly, immediately after disposal of the appeal by ITAT, and the authority under Black Money Act also acted in haste. In our considered view, at least a portion of the notice is based on the allegations set aside by ITAT. Therefore, the impugned notice requires re-examination in the hands of authorities under the Black Money Act,” the division bench observed.
On July 22, 2022, a single bench had dismissed the petition with liberty to take appropriate defence before the assessing officer.