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Gujarat High Court asks CBDT to extend deadline for filing I-T returns to November 30
September, 23rd 2014

Chartered accountants had reasons to rejoice on Monday with Gujarat High Court directing the Central Board of Direct Taxes (CBDT) to extend the deadline for filing income tax returns (ITR) to November 30, 2014. The court order, however, comes with a rider.The extension given will be subject to payment of interest on self assessment tax under Section 234A for late filing of income tax report.

The court order followed two writ petitions filed by CA firm Rajni Shah & Associates and All Gujarat Federation of Tax Consultants challenging the CBDT directive extend ing deadline for furnishing tax audit report (TAR). When contacted by ET, CA Rajni Shah said the court has directed CBDT to extend the September 30 deadline for filing ITR for assessees who are subject to tax audit under Section 44AB. "It is clear that the court understood the difficulties tax payers would have to face if they file ITRs without getting their books-of-account audited."

Since Gujarat High Court has passed an order, CA firms who have filed similar petitions in other courts across the country plan to withdraw their petition. No formal decision has been taken as yet. "We will take a call later in the night after discussing the same with our lawyers," said Mahesh Kumar of Mahesh Kumar & Co, who too had filed a writ petition in Delhi High Court.The case is scheduled to come up for hearing on September 23.

Incidentally, similar writ petitions filed in high courts of Mumbai and Rajasthan is also expected to come up for hearing on September 23.

"It is not that CBDT is known for its hasty decisions. It has, in exercise of powers conferred under Section 119 of the IT Act, 1961, extended the due-date for filing returns from September 30 to November 30, in cases of income tax assessees in the state of Jammu & Kashmir. The extension comes in the wake of the large scale devastation due to heavy rains and floods," said chartered accountant Alok Gupta, director -taxation, SS Kothari Mehta & Co.

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