Delhi HC to pass order on Congress’ plea in tax demand case today

The bench had told the senior lawyer that though the demand was raised in 2021, the party did not take any steps to resolve the issue. It had said it was a “badly handled matter” and that someone from the Congress office had slept through it since 2021.

“Merely because someone decided to wake up and give you notice in February does not change those facts,” the bench had said.

The counsel for the IT department had submitted that though the Congress was given the option to pay 20 per cent of the demand in 2021, it was not done. He had said that if the assessee does not avail the facility of depositing 20 per cent of the demand at the time of offer, the entire amount becomes recoverable.

The IT department counsel had informed the court that the original tax demand was Rs 102 crore and with interest it came to Rs 135.06 crore. He said that Rs 65.94 crore has been recovered so far.

Before the ITAT, counsel for the Congress had argued that the initiation of recovery proceedings under section 226(3) of the Income Tax Act on February 13 was so timely that the assessee would not have had sufficient resources left to contest the parliamentary elections.

The tribunal had rejected the stay application saying, “…we do not think that the recovery notice under section 226(3) of the Act issued by the Assessing Officer on February 13, 2024 lacks authenticity, which leads us to If necessary, intervene.”

The party had earlier said the IT tribunal’s order freezing its funds was an “attack on democracy” as it came just before the Lok Sabha elections.