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24 February 2020

Any rejection order passed under SVLDRS, 2019, must be after affording an opportunity of personal hearing to the declarant

The Hon'ble Karnataka High Court, in a recent matter of M/s Kiran Borewell v. Union of India & Others in Writ Petition No. 51929/2019, observed that Rejection Order passed by Designated Committee under SVLDRS is the unilateral decision without affording an opportunity of being heard to the Petitioner. It was held by Hon'ble High Court that any order passed by the quasi-judicial authority adversely affecting the rights of the parties should be strictly in adherence to the Principles of Natural Justice and accordingly, the declaration of Petitioner under SVLDRS was restored for re-consideration.

In the present matter, M/s Kiran Borewells submitted a declaration under Sabka Vishwas (Legacy Dispute Resolution) Scheme, 2019 (SVLDRS, 2019), which was rejected by Designated Committee (SVLDRS) without providing an opportunity to the petitioner to put-forth their explanation/reply. The said declaration was rejected mainly on the ground that the designated committee after due consideration of the definition of "quantified" as provided under Section 121(r) of the Finance Act (No. 2), 2019 observed that as the tax dues were not intimated, therefore, the same was not quantified for the period involved.

However, the petitioner grieved that the unilateral decision taken by Designated Committee (SVLDRS) is against the Principles of Natural Justice as no opportunity of hearing was provided to him in this regard.