SC dismisses plea, IT dept to probe firm linked to Robert Vadra
New Delhi : Breaking news from Supreme Court tells that the apex court has dismissed petition filed by a hospitality firm against the probe by the Income Tax Department notice to it for re-assessment of its profits from land deals in Haryana and Rajasthan for 2010-11. It is believed that the firm is linked with Robert Vadra, the son-in-law of Sonia Gandhi.
The SC on Friday dismissed the request of a firm linked to Robert Vadra against the income tax notice for re-evaluation of its 2010-11 land deals in Haryana and Rajasthan. Sources confirmed that, earlier, Vadra, the husband of Priyanka Gandhi had refused to appear in person before the department. But now, the probe into the firm, Sky Light Hospitality LLP will continue and Vadra, who was a director in the firm, will have to appear before the IT
The Supreme Court said it was satisfied with the arguments given by I-T officials justifying their investigation. The court also agreed that it was not a case of political dispute as has been claimed by certain quarters.
Earlier, in February, the Delhi High Court had dismissed the plea of the Delhi-based hospitality firm linked to Vadra, challenging an I-T Department notice for re-assessment of its profits from land deals in Haryana and Rajasthan for the years 2010-11.
The I-T Department had shown before the court a tax evasion report stating that it had reasons to believe over Rs 35 crore, received by the firm in 2010-11, “had escaped from assessment”. A bench of justices Sanjiv Khanna and Chander Shekhar said, “After going through the reasons, we are satisfied that the ‘reasons to believe’ show and establish a live link and connect with the inference drawn that income had escaped assessment, which is required for issuance of notice.”
Sky Light Hospitality LLP, in its plea, had argued that the ‘reasons to believe’ were simply doubts and as of now, a proof that income had escaped assessment.
Disagreeing with the firm’s argument, the Bench said that “absolute certainty is not required at the time of issue of notice and at the same time, ‘reasons to believe’ must not be based on mere suspicion, gossip or rumour. The said test and criteria, we have no hesitation in holding, is satisfied in the present case”.“There is evidence and material on record to justify issue of notice,” it said and added that as long as there was a “honest and reasonable opinion” formed by the assessing officer and the ‘reasons to believe’ are not mere ‘reasons to suspect’, “the courts should not interject to stop the adjudication process and scrutiny on merits”.