Lawyers’ stir: HC to hear IT dept plea on Dec 10

The Orissa High Court has fixed December 10 to consider an intervention petition filed by Income Tax department in connection with a PIL seeking normal functioning of courts in Sambalpur. 

Published: 04th December 2019 02:58 AM  |   Last Updated: 04th December 2019 08:48 AM   |  A+A-

By Express News Service

CUTTACK:  The Orissa High Court has fixed December 10 to consider an intervention petition filed by Income Tax department in connection with a PIL seeking normal functioning of courts in Sambalpur. 
Principal Commissioner of Income Tax, Sambalpur Range DN Kar filed the intervention petition on Monday to implead him in the PIL ‘for proper adjudication of the case’. Kar has alleged that for the last few months Sambalpur Bar Association has been giving a strike call on the last three days of the month.

“Their Bar Association members are also coming and forcibly preventing officers and staff from entering the office building. They also threaten tax payers and Chartered Accountants entering the office building and it is apprehended that the Bar Association would again resort to a similar boycott on the last three days of December, which would have a serious impact on tax administration in Sambalpur”, Kar said in the petition.

“Hundreds of assessment orders would get time barred on December 31 in terms of Section 153 of IT Act, 1961. The department cannot pass such orders beyond the date and if that happens, not only the exchequer would lose revenue, the assessing officers are likely to face departmental proceedings for no fault of theirs”, Kar stated in the petition.

The Sambalpur District Bar Association has been spearheading the strike since September 5 for establishment of a bench of Orissa High Court in Western Odisha affecting normal functioning of various judicial courts.A lawyer, Shivsankar Mohanty filed the PIL in November last year. On November 19, the HC had directed Sambalpur SP to ensure that all lawyers willing to attend court work are not prevented from entering the court premises by the striking lawyers under the banner of Sambalpur District Bar Association. 

On Monday, DSP of Sambalpur Narendra Kumar Sarangi filed an affidavit stating that IIC’s of Town police station and Dhanupalli police station have been instructed “to provide security to the litigant public and advocates when they are attending the court”.“Necessary police arrangements are being made and police protection and security are being provided to the judges to attend their respective courts”, Sarangi said in the affidavit. Taking note of the intervention petition and affidavit, the Division Bench of Chief Justice KS Jhaveri and Justice KR Mohapatra posted the matter to December 10.

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