" The assessees had close relations and business dealings among themselves and with businessman Vakamulla Chandrashekhar and his company Tarini Infrastructure Ltd., which require coordinated and joint investigations in all cases."
Shimla, Dec 18 - In a major relief to Himachal Pradesh Chief Minister Virbhadra Singh, the high court Thursday set aside the decision of the income tax commissioner to transfer his and his family's income tax returns cases from Shimla to Chandigarh.

The impugned orders dated July 14, 2014 is quashed and set aside, a division bench of Chief Justice Mansoor Ahmad Mir and Justice Tarlok Singh Chauhan said.

The bench, which reserved the judgment Nov 26, said it will be open for the respondent to commence the proceedings afresh.

Since we have not made any observation on the relative merits of the case(s), therefore, in the event of fresh show-cause notice(s) being issued, it shall be open to the petitioner(s) to raise all questions of fact and law, including those raised before this court.

The petitioners had challenged the transfer of their income tax return cases, saying it would only result in their harassment.

The income tax commissioner, in his order, said the agricultural income of Virbhadra Singh and his family had dramatically increased in the revised return, which was an apparent attempt to justify the investments made in the purchase of insurance policies.

The assessees had close relations and business dealings among themselves and with businessman Vakamulla Chandrashekhar and his company Tarini Infrastructure Ltd., which require coordinated and joint investigations in all cases.

He transferred all the cases to deputy commissioner of income tax of central circle in Chandigarh, saying that centralisation of cases would enable the department to conduct focused, synchronized and coordinated investigation.


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