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THE WEALTH-TAX ACT, 1957

Title : THE WEALTH-TAX ACT, 1957

Year : 1957



Every Income-tax Officer having jurisdiction or exercising powers as such under the Income-tax Act in respect of any individual, Hindu undivided family or company shall perform the functions of a Wealth-tax Officer under this Act in respect of such individual, Hindu undivided family or company:

1*Provided that where two or more Income-tax Officers have jurisdiction or exercise powers under the Income-tax Act in respect of any individual, Hindu undivided family or company, they shall have concurrent jurisdiction 2*[and shall perform their functions in respect of such individual, Hindu undivided family or company, as the case may be, in accordance with such general or special orders in writing as the Commissioner or the Inspecting Assistant Commissioner authorised by the Commissioner in this behalf may make for the purpose of facilitating the performance of such functions.]

Explanation: For the purposes of this section, the Income-tax officer or the Income-tax Officers having jurisdiction in relation to a person who is not an assessee within the meaning of the Income-tax Act, shall be the Income-tax Officer or Income-tax Officers in respect of the area in which that person resides.]

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1 Subs. by s. 7, ibid., for "the circumstances of the case may require" (w.e.f. 1-4-1965).

2 Subs. by Act 20 of 1967, s. 34, for Explanation (w.e.f. 1-4-1967).

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8A.1* Power of Commissioner respecting specified areas, cases or persons:

(1) The Commissioner may, by general or special order in writing, direct that such of the functions assigned to the Wealth-tax officer by or under this Act as are specified in any such order may, in respect of any specified area or specified cases or classes of cases or specified persons or classes of persons, be performed by an Inspector of Wealth-tax or any member of the ministerial staff, appointed to work under the Commissioner or any other Wealth-tax authority subordinate to him, and specified in such order, subject to such conditions, restrictions or limitations as may be specified therein:

Provided that the Commissioner shall not, unless he is authorised in this behalf by the Board by general or special order in writing, make an order under this sub-section in relation to the functions of a Wealth-tax Officer mentioned in the following provisions of this Act, namely, sections 15B, 16, 17, 18, 20, 22, 24, 32, 37 and 37A.

(2) For the purposes of any case or person or proceeding under this Act in respect of which or whom any order under sub-section (1) applies, references in this Act or in any rule made here under to the Wealth-tax Officer shall be deemed to include references to the Inspector of Wealth-tax or the member of the ministerial staff specified in such order.

8AA.2* Concurrent jurisdiction of Inspecting Assistant
 
(1) The Commissioner may, by general or special order in writing, direct that all or any of the powers or functions conferred on or assigned to the Wealth-tax Officer or Wealth-tax Officers by or under this Act in respect of any area, or cases or classes of cases, or persons or classes of persons shall be exercised or performed concurrently by the Inspecting Assistant Commissioner, Commissioner and Wealth-tax Officer.

(2) Where under sub-section (1), an Inspecting Assistant Commissioner exercises concurrent jurisdiction with one or more Wealth-tax Officers in respect of any area, cases or classes of cases, or persons or classes of persons, the Wealth-tax Officer or Wealth-tax Officers shall exercise the powers and perform the functions under this Act in relation thereto as the Inspecting Assistant Commissioner may direct.

(3) Without prejudice to the generality of the provisions contained in sub-section (2) of section 13, every Wealth-tax Officer shall also observe and follow such instructions as may be issued to him for his guidance by the Inspecting Assistant Commissioner within whose jurisdiction he performs his functions in relation to any particular proceeding or the initiation of any proceeding under this Act.

Provided that no instructions which are prejudicial to the assesee shall be issued before an opportunity is given by the Inspecting Assistant Commissioner to the assessee to be heard.

Explanation: For the purposes of this sub-section, no instruction as to the lines on which an investigation connected with the assesment should be made shall be deemed to be an instruction prejudcial to the assessee.

(4)3* Where an order is made under sub-section (1) and the Inspecting Assistant Commissioner exercises the powers or performs the functions of a Wealth-tax Officer in respect of any case or person or proceeding, references in this Act or in any rule made there under to the Wealth-tax Officer and the Appellate Assistant Commissioner shall be construed as references to the Inspecting Assistant Commissioner and the Commissioner respectively and, accordingly:

(i) Any provision of this Act requiring approval or sanction of the Inspecting Assistant Commissioner shall not apply;

(ii) Any appeal which would otherwise have lain to the Appellate Assistant Commissioner shall lie to the
Commissioner;

(iii) Any appeal which would have lain from an order of the Appellate Assistant Commissioner to the Appellate Tribunal shall lie from the order of the Commissioner.]

8B. Power to transfer cases

(1) 4* The Commissioner may, after giving the assessee a reasonable opportunity of being heard in the matter, wherever it is possible to do so, and after recording his reasons for doing so, transfer any case from one or more of the following officers subordinate to him, namely:

(a) Any Wealth-tax Officer or Wealth-tax Officers;

(b) Any Wealth-tax Officer or Wealth-tax Officers having concurrent jurisidiction with the Inspecting Assistant Commissioner, to any other Wealth-tax Officer or Wealth-tax Officers (whether with or without concurrent jurisdiction with the Inspecting Assistant Commissioner) also subordinate to him and the Board any similarly transfer any case from-

(i) Any Wealth-tax Officer or Wealth-tax Officers, or

(ii) Any Wealth-tax Officer or Wealth-tax Officers having concurrent jurisdiction with the Inspecting Assistant Commissioner, to any other Wealth-tax Officer or Wealth-tax Officers (whether with or without concurrent jurisdiction with the Inspecting Assistant Commissioner):

Provided that nothing in this sub-section shall be deemed to require any such opportunity to be given where a transfer is from any Wealth-tax Officer or Wealth-tax Officers (whether with or without concurrent jurisdiction with the Inspecting Assistant Commissioner) to any other Wealth-tax Officer or Wealth-tax Officers (whether with or without concurrent jurisdiction with the Inspecting Assistant Commissioner) and the offices of all such officers are situated in the same city, locality or place:

Provided further
that:

(a) Where any case has been transferred from any Wealth-tax Officer or Wealth-tax Officers to two or more Wealth-tax Officers to whom the case is so transferred shall have concurrent jurisdiction over such case and shall perform their functions in accordance with such general or special orders in writing as the Board or the Commissioner or the Inspecting Assistant Commissioner authorised by the Commissioner in this behalf, may make for the purpose of facilitating the performance of such functions;

(b) Where any case has been transferred from any Wealth-tax Officer or Wealth-tax Officers (whether with or without concurrent jurisdiction with the Inspecting Assistant Commissioner) to two or more Wealth-tax Officers with concurrent jurisdiction with the Inspecting Assistant Commissioner, the officers (including the Inspecting Assistant Commissioner) to whom the case is so transferred shall have concurrent jurisdiction over such case and shall perform their functions in accordance with such general or special orders in writing as the Board or the Commissioner may make for the purpose of facilitating the performance of such functions and the Wealth-tax officers shall perform their functions also in accordance with such orders or directions as the Inspecting Assistant Commissioner may make under section 8 or, as the case may be, under sub-section (2) of section 8AA.

(2) The transfer of a case under sub-section (1) may be made at any stage of the proceedings, and shall not render necessary the reissue of any notice already issued by the Wealth-tax Officer or Wealth-tax Officers from whom the case is transferred.

Explanation: In this section and in section 8A, the word "case", in relation to any person whose name is specified in any order made there under, means all proceedings under this Act in respect of any year which may be pending on the date of such order, or which may have been completed on or before such date, and includes also all proceedings under this Act which may be commenced after the date of such order in respect of any year.

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1 Subs. by Act 20 of 1967, s. 34, for s. 8A (w.e.f. 1-4-1967).

2 Subs. by Act 41 of 1975, s. 84 (w.e.f. 1-10-1975).

3 Ins. by s. 85, ibid.

4 Subs. by s. 86, ibid.

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The Board may empower as many persons as it thinks fit to exercise under this Act the functions of an Appellate Assistant Commissioner of Wealth-tax, and on being so empowered the Appellate Assistant Commissioners shall perform their functions in respect of such areas or such persons or such classes of persons as the Board may direct, and where such directions have assigned to two or more Appellate Assistant Commissioners the same area or the same persons or the same classes of persons they shall perform their functions in accordance with such orders as the Board may make for the distribution and allocation of the work to be performed.



The Board may empower as many persons as it thinks fit to exercise under this Act the functions of a Commissioner of Wealth-tax, and on being so empowered the Commissioners of Wealth-tax shall perform their functions in respect of such areas or such persons or such classes of persons as the Board may direct and where such directions have assigned to two or more Commissioners the same area or the same persons or the same classes of persons they shall have concurrent jurisdiction 1*[and shall perform such functions in relation to the said area or persons or classes of persons as the Board may, by general or special order in writing, specify, for the distribution and allocation of the work to be performed].

10A. Directors of Inspections
 
(1) The Board may empower as many persons as it thinks fit to exercise under this Act the functions of a Director of Inspection.

(2) A Director of Inspection shall perform such functions of any other Wealth-tax authority as may be assigned to him by the Board.

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1 Subs. by Act 20 of 1967, s. 34, for certain words (w.e.f. 1-4-1967).

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The Commissioner of Wealth-tax may empower as many persons as he thinks fit to exercise under this Act the functions of an Inspecting Assistant Commissioner of Wealth-tax, and on being so empowered the Inspecting Assistant Commissioners of Wealth-tax shall perform their functions in respect of such areas or such persons or such classes of persons as the Commissioner may direct, and where such directions have assigned to two or more Inspecting Assistant Commissioners the same area or the same persons or the same classes of persons 1*[they shall have concurrent jurisdiction and shall perform such functions in respect of the said areas or persons or classes of persons as the Commissioner may, by general or special order in writing, specify, for the distribution and allocation of the work to be performed].

11A.2*[3* Inspector of Wealth-tax

A Commissioner may empower any Inspector of Income-tax within the meaning of the Income-tax Act to work as an Inspector of Wealth-tax under any other Wealth-tax authority sub-ordinate to him; and when he is so empowered, he shall perform such functions in the execution of this Act as are assigned to him by the Commissioner by an order, whether made under sub-section (1) of section 8A or otherwise, or by any other Wealth-tax authority under whom he is appointed to work.

11AA. 4* Commissioner competent to perform any function or functions
 
In respect of any function to be performed by a Commissioner under any provision of this Act in relation to an assessee, the Commissioner referred to therein shall:

(a) In a case where only one Commissioner has jurisdiction over such assessee, be such Commissioner;

(b) In a case where two or more Commissioners have concurrent jurisdiction over such assessee, be the Commissioner empowered to perform such function by the Board.

11B. 5* Wealth-tax Officer competent to perform any function or functions

In respect of any function to be performed by a Wealth-tax officer under any provision of this Act, in relation to any assessee, the Wealth-tax Officer referred to therein shall:

(a) In a case where only one Wealth-tax Officer has jurisdiction over such assessee, be such Wealth-tax officer;

(b) In a case where two or more Wealth-tax Officers have concurrent jurisdiction over such assessee, be the Wealth-tax Officer empowered to perform such function by the Board, or, as the case may be, the Wealth-tax officer to whom such function has been assigned by an order of the Commissioner or of the Inspecting Assistant Commissioner of Wealth-tax authorised by the Commissioner in this behalf.

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1 Ins. by Act 46 of 1964, s. 10 (w.e.f. 1-4-1965).

2 Subs. by s. 11, ibid., for s. 12 (w.e.f. 1-4-1965).

3 Subs. by Act 20 of 1967, s. 34, for the former section (w.e.f. 1-4-1967).

4 Ins. by Act 19 of 1970, s. 26 (w.e.f. 1-4-1971).

5 Ins. by Act 20 of 1967, s. 34 (w.e.f. 1-4-1967).

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(1) Inspecting Assistant Commissioners shall be subordinate to the Commissioner within whose jurisdiction they perform their functions and also to the Director of Inspection.

(2) Wealth-tax Officers shall be subordinate to the Commissioner and the Inspecting Assistant Commissioner within whose jurisdiction they perform their functions and also to the Director of Inspection.

(3) Inspectors of Wealth-tax shall be subordinate to the Wealth-tax Officer or other Wealth-tax authority under whom they are em -powered to work and to any other Wealth-tax authority to whom the said officer or other authority is subordinate.

Explanation: For the purposes of sub-section (1), "Director of Inspection" does not include a Deputy Director of Inspection or an Assistant Director of Inspection; and for the purposes of sub-section (2) of this section and sub-section (2) of section 13, "Director of Inspection" does not include an Assistant Director of Inspection.



(1)1* All officers and other persons employed in the execution of this Act shall observe and follow the orders, instructions and directions of the Board:

Provided that no orders, instructions or directions shall be given by the Board so as to interfere with the discretion of the Appellate Assistant Commissioner of Wealth-tax in the exercise of his appellate function.

(2)2* Every Wealth-tax Officer employed in the execution of this Act shall observe and follow such instructions as may be issued to him for his guidance by the Director of Inspection or by the Commissioner or by the Inspecting Assistant Commissioner within whose jurisdiction he performs his functions.

13A. 3* Powers of Director of Inspection, Commissioner and Inspecting Assistant Commissioner to make enquiries

The Director of Inspection, the Commissioner of Wealth-tax and the Inspecting Assistant Commissioner of Wealth-tax shall be competent to make any enquiry under this Act, and for this purpose shall have all the powers that a Wealth-tax Officer has under this Act in relation to the making of enquiries.

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1 S. 13 re-numbered as sub-section (1) of that section by Act 46 of 1964, s. 12 (w.e.f. 1-4-1965).

2 Ins. by s. 12, ibid. (w.e.f. 1-4-1965).

3 Ins. by s. 13, ibid. (w.e.f. 1-4-1965).

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Last updated on September, 2016

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