Decided on June 13,2014

Jagdish And Kamla Mittal Museum Of Indian Art Appellant
Dit Respondents


Saktijit Dey, Member (J) - (1.) THIS appeal is directed against the order dated 17 -8 -2012 passed by the DIT (E), Hyderabad rejecting assessee's application for renewal of approval granted u/s. 80G(5) of the Act.
(2.) BRIEFLY stated, the assessee claiming itself to be a charitable trust was created vide trust deed dated 13 -3 -76. The assessee was granted registration u/s. 12A of the Act vide order dated 3 -5 -1976. Subsequently, as it appears from the facts on record, the assessee was also granted approval u/s. 80G(5)(vi) which was renewed up to 31 -3 -2003. On 25 -3 -2003, assessee filed an application in form 10G before the DIT(E) for continuation of approval u/s. 80G(5)(vi) of the Act. The DIT(E) vide order dated 22 -3 -2004 rejected assessee's application for renewal of approval u/s. 80G (5). As it appears from record, this order of rejection remained unchallenged by the assessee. Subsequently, the assessee again on 21 -2 -2012 made an application in form No. 10G before the DIT (E) seeking approval u/s. 80G(5)(vi) of the Act. In course of proceedings initiated in connection with application filed by the assessee -trust, the DIT (E) called for various information from the assessee apart from books of accounts and statement of accounts. The DIT (E) also issued a questionnaire seeking assessee's reply on the queries raised therein. The assessee trust submitted informations called for and also produced its books of accounts and financial statements. In response to the query raised by the DIT (E) with regard to the earlier order passed by his predecessor rejecting the application seeking approval u/s. 80G(5)(vi), the assessee submitted a detailed reply contesting the grounds on which the approval was rejected. The DIT (E) however not being convinced with the submissions made by the assessee trust passed the impugned order rejecting the application of approval u/s. 80G (5). Being aggrieved the assessee is before us. The learned AR advanced elaborate submissions contesting the reasons on which DIT (E) refused to grant the approval. It was contended by the learned AR, that the object of the trust is for charitable purposes has not been doubted is clear from the fact that registration granted u/s. 12A of the Act still continues. It was submitted that even the assessee was initially granted approval u/s. 80G(5) of the Act which continued till 31 -3 -2003. Objecting to the reasons on which the DIT (E) has refused approval, the learned AR submitted that one of the grounds is the assessee has not constructed a museum to keep the objects for viewing of the general public though it is one of the main objects in the trust deed. In this context, the learned AR referring to various correspondence made with the government and government agencies submitted that though the assessee has made all efforts for acquiring the land for the purpose of a museum, till now it has failed in its attempt to get a suitable land from the government for this purpose. With reference to the allegation of the DIT (E) that the art objects are not for the viewing of the general public, the learned AR submitted that in absence of a museum the art object of being of immense value are kept in bank locker, however, any person interested in art object is free to view the same. Therefore, it cannot be said that the art objects are not for the purpose of viewing by the general public. In support of such contention, the learned AR relied upon various correspondences made with different authorities. Refuting the allegation of the DIT (E) that the assessee was unable to give details of the art objects, the learned AR submitted before us a catalogue of art objects containing the details. It was thus contended by the learned AR that the assessee having fulfilled all the conditions of section 80G(5) of the Act, it is eligible for grant of approval.
(3.) THE learned DR, on the other hand, supporting the order of the DIT (E) submitted that though one of the main objects of the assessee trust is to keep art objects in museum for viewing of general public but till date this primary object has not been achieved as there is no museum built by the assessee and art objects are kept in bank which cannot be viewed by the general public. Therefore, the assessee having not achieved its object, the denial of approval u/s. 80G(5) is justified.;

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