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12th March 2016

Supreme Court observed that Sub-section (10) of Section 11 of Punjab General Sales Tax Act, 1948, gives power to the Commissioner to extend a period of three years. Interestingly, there is no upper limit prescribed for which the period can be extended, meaning thereby such an extension can be given, theoretically, for any length of time. This discretion is, however, controlled by obligating the Commissioner to give his reasons for extension, and such reasons are to be recorded in writing. Obviously, the purpose of giving reasons in writing is to ensure that the power to extend the period of limitation is exercised for valid reasons based on material considerations and that power is not abused by exercising it without any application of mind, or mala fide or on irrelevant considerations or for extraneous purposes. Such an order of extension of time, naturally, is open to judicial review, albeit within the confines of law on the basis of which such judicial review is permissible.


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