SREE NARAYANA GURU SMARAKA SANGAM UPPER PRIMARY SCHOOL Vs. UNION OF INDIA
HIGH COURT OF KERALA
Sree Narayana Guru Smaraka Sangam Upper Primary School
UNION OF INDIA
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A.M.SHAFFIQUE, J. -
(1.)Since common questions arise for consideration in these writ petitions, they are heard and decided together. Petitioners in these cases primarily challenge the constitutional validity of Sec. 234E of the Income Tax Act 1961 (hereinafter referred to as 'the Act' for short), which was inserted by Finance Act, 2012.
(2.)The short facts arising in W.P.(C) No.31498 of 2013 reads as under:-
Petitioner is a Lower Primary School and they were giving salary payments to the teaching and non-teaching staff of the school after Deducting Tax at Source (TDS) and the amount so collected is credited to the Income Tax Department. The petitioner has also been allotted with a number known as Tax Deduction and Collection Account Number (TAN). In terms of Sec. 200(3) of the Act, quarterly statement of TDS has to be filed in Form 24Q in respect of the salary for the corresponding quarter ending June/ September/ December/ March of every year. Petitioner submits that in respect of the quarter ending Sept. 2012 and Dec. 2012, TDS was collected and remitted in time. However, the statement in Form 24Q in respect of the 2nd and 3rd quarter was not filed in time. The due date for filing statement for the 2nd quarter was 15th Oct. and the 3rd quarter was 15th January. The statement is to be filed online through the National Securities Depository Ltd. (NSDL). Even if the statements are made ready for uploading, it can be done only at the TIN Facilitation Centres (TFC) set up by NSDL and cannot be done by an individual or entity. The fee for e-filing of the statement and fee for other services rendered are paid by the deductors. Petitioner submits that on account of various factors beyond the control of the deductor, there was delay in uploading the details of statement within the stipulated time.
(3.)By Finance Act, 2012, Sec. 234E has been introduced to the Act with effect from 01.07.2012 by which a fine is being imposed for failure to deliver or caused to be delivered a statement within the time prescribed in Sec. 200(3). The fine is Rs. 200.00 each for each days delay and the fee has to be paid before filing such statement. The Income Tax department has given to the petitioner a computer generated intimation under Sec. 200A of the Act demanding late fee under Sec. 234E for the 2nd and 3rd quarters amounting to Rs. 15,000.00 and Rs. 12,400.00 respectively for the delay in filing TDS statement. Exts.P1 and P2 are the said intimations.
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