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31. When tax, etc., payable and when assessee deemed in default.

(1) Any amount specified as payable in a notice of demand under section 30 shall be paid within 5[thirty days] of the service of the notice at the place and to the person mentioned in the notice:

Provided that, where the 4[Assessing Officer] has any reason to believe that it will be detrimental to revenue if the full period of 5[thirty days] aforesaid is allowed, he may, with the previous approval of the6[Joint Commissioner], direct that the sum specified in the notice of demand shall be paid within such period being a period less than the period of 5[thirty days] aforesaid, as may be specified by him in the notice of demand.

(2) If the amount specified in any notice of demand under section 30 is not paid within the period limited under sub-section (1), the assessee shall be liable to pay simple interest at 7[8[one per cent.] for every month or part of a month comprised in the period commencing from the day immediately following the end of the period mentioned in sub-section (1) and ending with the day on which the amount is paid]:

Provided that, where as a result of an order under section 23, 9[or section 23A,] or section 24, or section 25, or section 26, or section 27, or section 29, or section 35 10[or any order of the Wealth-taxSettlement Commission under sub-section (4) of section 22D], the amount on which interest was payable under this section had been reduced, the interest shall be reduced accordingly and the excess interest paid, if any, shall be refunded:

1. Subs. by the Laccadive, Minicoy and Amindivi Islands (Alteration of Name) Adaptation of Laws Order, 1974, for "the Laccadive, Minicoy and Amindivi Islands" (w.e.f. 1-11-1973).

2. Ins. by the Punjab Reorganisation and Delhi High Court (Adaptation of Laws on Union Subjects) Order, 1968 (w.e.f. 1-11-1966).

3. Subs. by Act 46 of 1964, s. 28, for sections 30, 31 and 32 (w.e.f. 1-4-1965).

4. Subs. by Act 4 of 1988, s. 127, for "Wealth-tax Officer" (w.e.f. 1-4-1988).

5. Subs. by s. 148, ibid., for "thirty-five days" (w.e.f. 1-4-1989).

6. Subs. by Act 21 of 1998, s. 66, for "Deputy Commissioner" (w.e.f. 1-10-1998). Earlier the quoted words were substituted by Act 4 of 1988, s. 127, for "Inspecting Assistant Commissioner" (w.e.f. 1-4-1988).

7. Subs. by Act 4 of 1988, s. 148, for "fifteen per cent. per annum from the day commencing after the end of the period mentioned in sub-section (1)" (w.e.f. 1-4-1989). Earlier "fifteen per cent." was substituted by Act 67 of 1984, s. 66, for "twelve per cent." (w.e.f. 1-10-1984).

8. Subs. by Act 54 of 2003, s. 20, for "one and one-fourth per cent." (w.e.f. 8-9-2003). Earlier the quoted words were substituted by Act 14 of 2001, s. 99, for "one and one-half per cent." (w.e.f. 1-6-2001).

9. Ins. by Act 10 of 2000, s. 74 (w.e.f. 1-6-2000).

10. Ins. by Act 4 of 1988, s. 148 (w.e.f. 1-4-1989).

1[Provided further that in respect of any period commencing on or before the 31st day of March, 1989, and ending after that date, such interest shall, in respect of so much of such period as falls after that date, be calculated at the rate of 2[one per cent.] for every month or part of a month.]

3[(2A) Notwithstanding anything contained in sub-section (2), the 4 [ 5 [Chief Commissioner or Commissioner] may] reduce or waive the amount of 6[interest paid or payable by an assessee] under the said sub-section if 7[he is satisfied that]

8[(i) payment of such amount has caused or would cause genuine hardship to the assessee;

(ii) default in the payment of the amount on which interest has been paid or was payable under the said sub-section was due to circumstances beyond the control of the assessee; and]

(iii) the assessee has co-operated in any inquiry relating to the assessment or any proceeding for the recovery of any amount due from him.]

(3) Without prejudice to the provisions contained in sub-section (2), on an application made by the assessee before the expiry of the due date under sub-section (1), the 9[Assessing Officer] may extend the time for payment or allow payment by instalments, subject to such conditions as he may think fit to impose in the circumstances of the case.

(4) If the amount is not paid within the time limited under sub-section (1) or extended under sub- section (3), as the case may be, at the place and to the person mentioned in the said notice, the assessee shall be deemed to be in default.

(5) If in a case where payment by instalments is allowed under sub-section (3), the assessee commits default in paying any one of the instalments within the time fixed under that sub-section, the assessee shall be deemed to be in default as to the whole of the amount then outstanding, and the other instalment or instalments shall be deemed to have been due on the same date as the instalment actually in default.

(6) Where an assessee has presented an appeal under section 23 10[or section 23A], the 9[Assessing Officer] may, in his discretion, and subject to such conditions as he may think fit to impose in the circumstances of the case, treat the assessee as not being in default in respect of the amount in dispute in the appeal, even though the time for payment has expired, as long as such appeal remains undisposed of.

(7) Where an assessee has been assessed in respect of assets located in a country outside India, the laws of which prohibit or restrict the remittance of money to India, the 9[Assessing Officer] shall not treat the assessee as in default in respect of that part of the tax which is attributable to those assets, and shall continue to treat the assessee as not in default in respect of that part of the tax until the prohibition or restriction of remittance is removed.

1. Ins. by Act 4 of 1988, s. 148 (w.e.f. 1-4-1989).

2. Subs. by Act 54 of 2003, s. 20, for "one and one-fourth per cent." (w.e.f. 8-9-2003). Earlier the quoted words were substituted by Act 14 of 2001, s. 99, for "one and one-half per cent." (w.e.f. 1-6-2001).

3. Ins. by Act 67 of 1984, s. 66 (w.e.f. 1-10-1984).

4. Subs. by Act 11 of 1987, s. 88, for "the Board may" (w.e.f. 1-4-1987).

5. Subs. by Act 4 of 1988, s. 127, for "Commissioner" (w.e.f. 1-4-1988).

6. Subs. by Act 11 of 1987, s. 88, for "interest payable by an assessee" (w.r.e.f. 1-10-1984).

7. Subs. by s. 88, ibid., for ", on the recommendation made by the Commissioner in this behalf, it is satisfied that" (w.e.f. 1-4- 1987).

8. Subs. by s. 88, ibid., for clauses (i) and (ii) (w.r.e.f. 1-10-1984).

9. Subs. by Act 4 of 1988, s. 127, for "Wealth-tax Officer" (w.e.f. 1-4-1988).

10. Ins. by Act 10 of 2000, s. 74 (w.e.f. 1-6-2000).



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