Onus to prove that land is a Agricultral Land lies on Taxpayer claiming exemption
The Relevant Text of the Order as follows:
The Ld. Senior Counsel for the assessee has fairly pleaded that one more opportunity be provided to the assessee and the assessee will appear before the authorities below and file all necessary cogent evidence to prove that the said land was an agricultural land used by the assessee for agricultural purposes and the assessee is entitled to exemption from income tax on the gains which arose on sale of the said land.
Thus, with the observations made by us in this order, we are setting aside and restoring this matter back to the file of AO. The reason is denovo framing of an assessment by afresh determination of the issue on merits as per the law. The assessee is directed to produce all necessary cogent evidence/explanations before the AO in set aside proceedings to substantiate its claim of exemption. The AO shall admit all relevant evidence/explanations submitted by the assessee in support of its contentions in its defence which shall be evaluated by the AO on merits in accordance with the law.
The AO if wishes to rely on any documents/evidence collected at the back of the assessee to prejudice assessee shall forward/furnish a copy of such documents to the assessee for rebuttal. We reiterate that the assessee is seeking to claim exemption from income tax on gains arisen from sale of land. As per the assessee, the land was an agricultural land used for agricultural purposes. Here the onus is on the assessee to prove that its case strictly falls under exemption provisions as are contained in the 1961 Act. Thus, the appeal filed by the assessee is allowed for statistical purposes. We order accordingly.
8. In the result appeal of the assessee is allowed for statistical purposes.