Madras HC quashes I-T order against Kalanithi Maran over SpiceJet

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Chennai | Published: March 28, 2018 6:22:40 PM

The Madras High Court today set aside a 2014 Income Tax department order declaring Kalanithi Maran as the principal officer of the low-cost carrier SpiceJet and making him liable for the alleged tax dues of the company when it was owned by him.

Kalanithi Maran row, madras high court, SpiceJet, income tax department, news on spicejetThe I-T department had not produced any material to establish that Maran was responsible for the day-to-day affairs of the SpiceJet, the judge said in his order. (PTI)

The Madras High Court today set aside a 2014 Income Tax department order declaring Kalanithi Maran as the principal officer of the low-cost carrier SpiceJet and making him liable for the alleged tax dues of the company when it was owned by him. Justice M Duraiswamy allowed a petition by Maran challenging the November 3, 2014 order of the I-T department related to various financial years when the company was under his ownership. The I-T department had not produced any material to establish that Maran was responsible for the day-to-day affairs of the SpiceJet, the judge said in his order.

“The main criteria to treat a person as the Principal Officer is that he should have been involved in the management, administration and day-to-day affairs of his company,” he said. Stating that unless the I-T department make out prima facie case against Maran of his liability and obligation as principal officer of the company under section 278 B of the I-T Act, he could not be prosecuted for the offences committed by the company, he added.

During the hearing of the petition earlier, counsel for Maran had submitted he was only the non-executive chairman and not involved in the company’s day-to-day affairs. Maran had sold SpiceJet to Ajay Singh in 2015.

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