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ITAT stays tax demand levied on ‘Uber’ for non-deduction of TDS on payment made to drivers

October 11, 2018[2018] 98 199 (Mumbai - Trib.)

IT : Assessee UBER India was providing marketing and support services to a foreign company, Uber B.V., a Netherland Company and it was collecting payments on behalf of said company and making disbursements to Driver-Partners as per directions of Uber B.V.

• A survey was conducted at registered office of assessee-company and it was observed that assessee had not complied with TDS provisions which had resulted in non-compliance of provisions of section 194C on payouts/dues to Driver-Partners. Accordingly, assessee was treated in default and demands of Rs. 24.92 crores and Rs. 84.13 crores for assessment years 2016-17 and 2017-18 were raised and penalty proceedings initiated.

• Assessee had denied liability to deduct TDS under section 194C on ground that it was not a 'person responsible for making payment' to Driver-Partners as contract was between Uber B.V. and Driver-Partners and it was merely working on directions of said company and passing on payments to Driver-Partners as per directions of Uber B.V. and sought stay on said demands and penalty proceedings.

• Tribunal held that assessee proved that facts of case were not properly and thoroughly examined and verified by lower authorities and, thus, was demand raised by revenue should be stayed subject to deposit of Rs. 20 crores till disposal of appeal on merits so that business of assessee will not be adversely impacted.

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