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SC finally restores power to center and IT department to initiate proceedings against VVIP Chopper case accused Gautam Khaitan

The Apex Court on Wednesday put a stay over the Delhi High Court’s order in restraining Central government to take action against accused Gautam Khaitan in Rs.3600 crore Augusta Westland VVIP Chopper case under the provisions of Black Money (Undisclosed Foreign Income and Assets) and Imposition of Tax Act and has also instructed the Delhi High Court to decide the matter afresh.

Supreme Court bench of Justice Arun Mishra, MR Shah and BR Gavai passed the judgment agains the order of Delhi High Court which had restrained Income Tax Department from taking any action against a Lawyer by profession Gautam Khaitan accused in Black Money Case. Supreme Court after observing the factual scenario in the present case held that since the interim order passed by the Delhi High Court is not sustainable in the eyes of law, the same is liable to be quashed and set-aside.

The appeal was preferred by the Centre as a result of the order passed by the Delhi High Court on May 16th wherein it instructed the Centre and the Income Tax department not to initiate any proceedings against Gautam Khaitan under section 55 of the Black Money (Undisclosed Foreign Income and Assets) and Imposition of Tax Act, 2015.

The issue raised for consideration that time was whether the provisions of Black Money Act could be applied retrospectively or not. To this, the High Court held that black money which came into force on April 1, 2016 cannot have retrospective effect from July, 2015.

Initially it was heard by the bench of Supreme Court consisting of Justice Arun Mishra, Justice M R Shah and Justice B R Gavai who in turn reserved the order on centre’s appeal and also pointed out that they are strongly of the opinion that the High Court’s order shall be set aside and let the proceedings go on with Gautam Khaiton as per the provisions of law.

-India Legal Bureau 

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