The Punjab and Haryana high court on Wednesday reversed a tax tribunal order, whereby income tax department (IT) notices were upheld to Punjab deputy chief minister Sukhbir Singh Badal, among other politicians.
In a relief to several Punjab sitting and former legislators, including deputy chief minister Sukhbir Singh Badal, the Punjab and Haryana high court has ruled that they are liable to pay tax only on the capital gains from the Tata Housing Company on the payments received so far.
The high court order came on the appeals of Sukhbir and 80-odd other sitting and former legislators, who had got income tax department notices for not paying tax on the capital gains according to the agreement carried out with the company for its Tata Camelot Housing Project at Kansal, SAS Nagar, adjoining Chandigarh.
The detailed order is awaited. While pronouncing the judgment, the high court bench of justices AK Mittal and Fateh Deep Singh made it clear that the petitioners were liable to pay tax only on the capital gains so far. It set aside the income tax tribunal order, whereby they were asked to pay the tax on the total gains according to the agreement.
The petition was filed in 2013 by 80-odd members of Punjab MLAs’ Cooperative House Building Society, founded in 2000. Sukhbir had challenged the notice issued to him in 2014.
The petitioners had argued that they had given only three acres of land for the project so far and not the 21 acres as agreed upon, and had also not received payments as per the agreement, hence the tax notices were illegal. According to them, the payment received so far is below Rs 30 lakh each.
According to the agreement of 2007 between the society and the company, each MLA was to get `82.5 lakh and a flat in lieu of their land for the company’s Camelot housing project.
Apart from Sukhbir, other politicians, including Bibi Jagir Kaur, Sucha Singh Langah, Sewa Singh Sekhwan, Charanjit Singh Atwal, Jagtar Singh Rajla, Gurdev Kaur, Tara Singh Ladal, Sukhdev Singh and Davinder Singh Cheema, had also challenged the I-T notices to them.