Since only a notice of appearance was given to the petitioner, to appear before the Tehsildar in order to submit their objection or reply to the Notice for recovery, the petitioner was granted 10 days’ time from the date of receipt of the certified copy of this order, to approach before respondent No. 4 through any designated authority of theirs, in order to file a reply to the said Notice, and for a period of 10 days of the filing of an objection before the Tehsildar. A single Judge bench comprising Hon’ble Justice Sharad Kumar Sharma in the matter of Reckitt Benckiser India Private Limited Vs. State of Uttarakhand and others (Writ Petition (M/S) No. 1546 of 2021), dealt with an issue where the petitioner has approached this court seeking for quashing of the order /Notice issued by the respondent, for direction in the nature of Mandamus directing the Respondent No. 2 to expeditiously and within a time-bound manner decide the Stay Application first and also the First Appeal filed by the Petitioner.
In the present case, the principal challenge, which has been given by the petitioner-company, is to the Notice, which has been issued by the respondent No. 4, herein i.e. the Tehsildar, whereby the petitioner was called upon to appear before the Tehsildar, on 03.08.2021, in order to submit its reply, as against the issuance of recovery citation under Section 280 to be read with Rule 236 of the U.P.Z.A. & L.R. Act, to say their part in regard to the propriety of the recovery sought to be made pertaining to the Assessment Year 2016-17.
The counsel for the petitioner submitted that against the tax assessed to be paid by the petitioner for the financial year, they had a remedy before the appellate Authority under section 51 of Uttarakhand VAT Act and under as per their pleadings that were raised in the writ petition against the assessment order and the rectification of assessment order, the petitioner had filed an appeal which was supported with the stay application and the same was pending for consideration before the Appellate authority because of the pandemic. The petitioner also submitted that they feel that on account of non-consideration of the pending Stay Application, which was preferred by them with an Appeal under Section 51 of the Act, the respondents may proceed on the basis of the impugned Notice are likely to attach the bank accounts of the petitioner-company for the recovery of the tax amount.
The Addl. CSC for the State had raised an objection to the effect and stated that His argument, at this stage, would not be sustainable in a writ jurisdiction under Article 226 of the Constitution of India, because the appeal and the stay application were yet to be considered by the competent Appellate Authority on merits.
The court directed that – “since it was only a notice of appearance given to the petitioner-company, to appear before the Tehsildar in order to submit their objection or reply to the Notice for recovery, the petitioner is granted 10 days’ time from the date of receipt of the certified copy of this order”.
The court also directed respondent No. 3- “in case if his appellate jurisdiction has now been conferred with respondent No. 2, he would ensure to remit the records of the Appeal expeditiously before respondent No. 2, within the aforesaid period of 10 days.” Moreover, respondent No. 2 is requested to consider the Stay Application of the petitioner under Section 51 of the Act, within a period of one month thereafter and pass an appropriate order on the same exclusively in accordance with law”. Thereby the writ petition was disposed of.