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Oracle India Pvt. Ltd Vs. The Principal Commissioner Of Income Tax, Delhi-7, & Anr.
February, 26th 2019

%                                      Date of Order: February 15, 2019

+            W.P.(C) 1552/2019, C.M. Appl. No. 7151-7152/2019

      ORACLE INDIA PVT. LTD                                  ..... Petitioner
                    Through:     Mr. M.S. Syali, Senior Advocate with
                                 Mr. Satyen Sethi, Mr. Arta Trana
                                 Panda, Ms. Gargi Sethee, Advocates
      INCOME TAX, DELHI-7, & ANR.                       ..... Respondents
                     Through:    Mr. Deepak Anand, Advocate for Mr.
                                 Zoheb Hossain, Senior Standing
                                 Counsel for Revenue


      1.     Issue Notice. Mr. Deepak Anand, Advocate, appearing on behalf
      of the respondent accepts notice of the petition as well as of the
      2.     The assessee seeks orders identical with orders made in relation to
      the special audits directed for Assessment Years 2015-16 and for the
      subsequent years. In previous orders, the court had heard other Writ
      Petitions including W.P.(C) No. 1110/2012, 2353/2013, 2500/2014,
      3765/2015, 735/2017 and 3630/2016 as well as W.P.(C) No. 2251/2018,
      and directed that the modified terms of reference made under Section
      142(2a) shall be followed in the special audit. In the present case,
      modified terms of reference have been indicated in the order of the
      Assessing Officer dated 31.12.2018. The previous order of this court
      passed in W.P.(C) No. 2251/2018, inter alia, was to the following effect:

W.P.(C) No. 1552/2019                                             Page 1 of 3
             "Learned counsel for the parties, on instructions, state that
             modified terms of reference for special audit are
             acceptable and may be taken on record. The modified
             terms of reference for the assessment years ('Ays') 2008-
             2009 to 2013-2014 signed by counsel for the parties are
             enclosed as annexure-A to this order and would be treated
             as a part of this order.

             Learned counsel for the parties also agree that the special
             audit under Section 142(2A) of the Income Tax Act, 1961
             would begin on 1.4.2018 with the audit for the A Y 2008-
             2009. On completion of special audit for A Y 2008-2009,
             special audit for the next A Y, i.e. 2009-2010 will
             commence. Thereafter, on completion of the special audit
             for preceding year, special audit for the succeeding year
             would commence.

             Learned counsel for the parties also agree that the special
             audit under Section 142(2A) of the Income Tax Act, 1961
             would begin on 1.4.2018 with the audit for the AY 2008-
             2009. On completion of special audit for AY 2008-2009,
             special audit for the next AY, i.e. 2009-2010 will
             commence. Thereafter, on completion of the special audit
             for preceding year, special audit for the succeeding year
             would commence.

             In order to ensure that there is no dispute or debate about
             limitation, it is directed that the interim orders staying
             special audit and assessment proceeding for the A Y 2009-
             2010 and subsequent years would continue till the special
             audit for the immediate preceding year is completed. This
             direction is acceptable to both the petitioner and the
             respondents. Interim order for the A Y 2008-2009 would
             remain in force till31.3.2018.

             This statement and direction is justified and necessary, as
             simultaneous special audit for all years would create
             difficulties, cause inconvenience and would require huge
             manpower. Further, issues overlap and some issues may
             not require examination in view of finding in an earlier
             year. This would be an aspect to be examined and
             considered by the assessing officer ('AO') and the special
             auditor. The petitioner, of course, will be at liberty to

W.P.(C) No. 1552/2019                                              Page 2 of 3
               approach the AO and the special auditor, on the basis of
               the audit or the assessment orders passed for the earlier

               In case any issue cannot be resolved or settled, the parties
               can approach the court by way of an application in the
               present writ petitions. We also clarify that this consent
               order would not affect the advance pricing agreement
               proceedings, which are stated to be pending.

               Writ petitions are accordingly disposed of, with no order as
               to costs."

      3.       This court also clarifies that in line with the previous orders made
      in all the said writ petitions, simultaneous special audit for all years will
      create difficulties and also result in overlapping of some issues that may
      arise during examination in all different years. The Assessing Officer
      and the Special Auditor may examine these aspects also. It is open to the
      petitioner/assessee to approach the AO and the special auditor on the
      basis of audit and the assessment order passed in the earlier years. In the
      event it is necessary to resolve any such incidental issue, the parties are
      at liberty to approach this court.
      4.       Furthermore, the Special Auditor shall adhere to the terms of
      reference (contained in the order dated 31.12.2018) while carrying out
      the task assigned to him.
      5.       The writ petition and the application is disposed of in the above

                                                       S. RAVINDRA BHAT, J

                                                          PRATEEK JALAN, J
      FEBRUARY 15, 2019

W.P.(C) No. 1552/2019                                                Page 3 of 3
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