S. 254: ITAT cannot decline to admit additional ground of appeal on the ground that it would in any case be answered against the appellant on merits
In the light of authoritative pronouncement in National Thermal Power Limited Company V/s. CIT 229 ITR 383 and which was binding on the Tribunal, in terms of Article 141 of the Constitution of India, we do not see how the Tribunal could have disallowed the Assessee from raising this ground. It may be that the Tribunal is inclined not to grant the request of the Assessee because eventually the ground may have to be answered against the Assessee on merits. However, that is a totally irrelevant consideration. We are on the power of the Tribunal to permit raising of such ground and which may or may not be arising from the order of the First Appellate Authority. In the instant case, that issue is specifically taken up before the Assessing Officer. That the Commissioner may or may not have rendered any view on it as the First Appellate Authority, does not mean that the Tribunal was precluded in law from considering the same after it was specifically raised by the Assessee before it. This approach of the Tribunal and being contrary to the express language of the statute and interpreted in a binding judgment of the Hon’ble Supreme Court that we are of the opinion that the Tribunal’s order cannot be sustained in law.