Justice P. P. Bhatt, the President of Income Tax Appellate Tribunal, today briefed the media regarding inauguration of Office-Cum-Residential Complex of Cuttack Bench of ITAT by Prime Minister Narendra Modi tomorrow. Prime Minister of India, Narendra Modi Ji, will inaugurate a state-of-the-art office-cum- residential complex of Income Tax Appellate Tribunal at Cuttack on 11th November, 2020 at 16:30 Hrs. The Inaugural function will be attended virtually by Ravi Shankar Prasad, Minister for Law & Justice, Communications and Electronics & Information Technology, Dharmendra Pradhan, Union Minister of Petroleum & Natural Gas and Steel, Naveen Patnaik, Chief Minister of Odisha, Chief Justice and Judges of Orissa High Court, Justice P.P. Bhatt, President, Income Tax Appellate Tribunal, P.C. Modi, Chairman, Central Board of Direct Taxes, Vice Presidents and Members of ITAT, Departmental Officers and Office Bearers and members of various Bar Associations across the country.
Bhatt said that the ITAT Cuttack has been functioning from rented premises since 1970 for almost 50 years and has jurisdiction for appeals arising from the State of Odisha. So, the inauguration of this Complex will help Cuttack Bench of ITAT in imparting justice to the needy. With the E-court facility provided in the new building with good connectivity facility, the Cuttack Bench will be able to hear and dispose of even the appeals pending with other benches in the Kolkata Zone which are presently non-functional such as Ranchi, Patna and Guwahati.
The Cuttack Bench of the ITAT was created and started functioning from 23rd May, 1970. The jurisdiction of Cuttack Bench extends to the whole of Odisha. The newly-built office-cum-residential complex of ITAT, Cuttack is spread over an area of 1.60 acres of land allotted by the State Government of Odisha free of cost in the year 2015. The total built-up area of the office complex is 1938 sq.mtrs. over 3 floors including, inter alia, the spacious court room, ultra-modern record room, well-equipped chambers for the Members of the Bench, library room, well-equipped modern conference hall, with sufficient space for the litigants, bar room for Lawyers, Chartered Accountants, etc.
On this occasion, an e-Coffee Table Book on ITAT along with an e-Book on ‘Reforms in Direct Taxes since 2014’, will also be released.
While mentioning about the performance of ITAT during COVID pandemic, ITAT President said that The ITAT has set up Virtual Court at all the Benches across the country. ITAT has been effectively using these facilities to conduct ‘Virtual Hearings’ during the lockdown period due to ‘Covid-19 pandemic’. During this period, ITAT has disposed off 7251 cases as against 3778 cases filed. He told that ITAT is making extensive use of technology to make justice more accessible to people. A new E-filing portal is ready which shall facilitate e-filing of appeals, documents and other applications by the litigants.Physical notice boards are being replaced by digital screens displaying constitution of benches, cause lists and other information. E-office workplace solutions are being implemented. With the E-court facility provided in the new building with good connectivity facility, the Cuttack Bench will be able to hear and dispose of even the appeals pending with other benches in the Kolkata Zone which are presently non-functional such as Ranchi, Patna and Guwahati.
Income Tax Appellate Tribunal, also known as ITAT, is an important statutory body in the field of direct taxes and its orders are accepted as final, on findings of fact. It is presently headed by Mr. Justice (Retd) P.P. Bhatt, formerly Judge of the High Court of Jharkhand and High Court of Gujarat.
ITAT was the first Tribunal to be created on 25th January, 1941. It is also known as ‘Mother Tribunal’. Starting with three benches in the year 1941, at Delhi, Bombay and Calcutta it has grown to 63 Benches and two circuit benches spread across thirty cities of India. The motto of ITAT is “Nispaksh Sulabh Satvar Nyay”, which means impartial, easy and speedy justice. In its glorious 79 years of existence, ITAT, has rendered yeoman service in imparting justice to the litigants, in an inexpensive and expeditious manner free from all technicalities.