The Delhi High Court today put on hold the Income Tax department’s order for recovery of over Rs 411 crore outstanding tax from Nokia India Sales for the assessment year 2014-15. A bench of Justices S Ravindra Bhat and Najmi Waziri issued the direction on Nokia’s plea challenging the assessing officer’s March 9 interim order for recovery of 33 per cent of outstanding taxes which came to more than Rs 411 crore. The court also issued notice to the Centre and the I-T department and sought their reply to Nokia’s plea claiming that income assessed by the assessing officer was ten times more than what was declared by the company.
The assessing officer had issued the order for recovery of 33 per cent of the outstanding taxes calculated by him on Nokia’s plea to stay the entire assessment order till its appeal against it was pending before the appellate authority.
The mobile phone manufacturer, which was represented by senior advocate Percy Pardiwalla, told the high court bench that as per a February 2016 circular of the Central Board of Direct Taxes (CBDT), the assessing officer ought to have sought recovery of 15 per cent or less of the outstanding taxes.
Nokia has contended that the circular was not considered by the assessing officer. The high court listed Nokia’s plea, filed through advocate Rony John, for further hearing on July 25.