Section 278E of Income Tax Act for AY 2023-24

Section 278E of Income Tax Act 1961 as amended by the Finance Act 2022 and Income-tax Rules, 1962. Presumption as to culpable mental state.

Amended and updated notes on section 278E of Income Tax Act 1961 as amended by the Finance Act 2022 and Income-tax Rules, 1962. Detail discussion on provisions and rules related to Presumption as to culpable mental state.

Chapter XXII (Sections 275A to 280D) of the Income Tax Act 1961 deals with the provisions related to offences and prosecutions. Section 278E of IT Act 1961 provides for Presumption as to culpable mental state.

Recently, we have discussed in detail section 278D (Presumption as to assets, books of account, etc., in certain cases) of IT Act 1961. Today, we learn the provisions of section 278E of Income-tax Act 1961. The amended provision of section 278E is effective for financial year 2022-23 relevant to the assessment year 2023-24.

In this article, you will learn detail of the provisions of section 278E of the Income Tax Act, 1961 Bare Act read with the Income-tax Rules, 1962 as provided by Ministry of Law and Justice, Government of India.

Section-278E: Presumption as to culpable mental state

Section 278E(1) of Income Tax Act

In any prosecution for any offence under this Act which requires a culpable mental state on the part of the accused, the court shall presume the existence of such mental state but it shall be a defence for the accused to prove the fact that he had no such mental state with respect to the act charged as an offence in that prosecution.

Explanation: In this sub-section, “culpable mental state” includes intention, motive or knowledge of a fact or belief in, or reason to believe, a fact.

Section 278E(2) of Income Tax Act

For the purposes of this section, a fact is said to be proved only when the court believes it to exist beyond reasonable doubt and not merely when its existence is established by a preponderance of probability.


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