Section 35E of Income Tax Act: Deduction for Prospecting for Minerals

Section 35E of Income Tax Act amended by Finance Act and Income-tax Rules. Deduction for expenditure on prospecting for certain minerals.

Amended and updated notes on section 35E of Income Tax Act 1961 as amended by the Finance Act 2020 and Income-tax Rules, 1962. Detail discussion on provisions and rules related to deduction for expenditure on prospecting, etc., for certain minerals.

Chapter IV (Sections 14 to 59) of the Income Tax Act 1961 deals with the provisions related to computation of total income. Section 35E of IT Act 1961-2020 provides for deduction for expenditure on prospecting, etc., for certain minerals.

Recently, we have discussed in detail section 35DDA (amortisation of expenditure incurred under voluntary retirement scheme) of IT Act 1961. Today, we learn the provisions of section 35E of Income-tax Act 1961. The amended provision of section 35E is effective for financial year 2020-21 relevant to the assessment year 2021-22.

In this article, you will learn detail of the provisions of section 35E of the Income Tax Act, 1961 Bare Act read with the Income-tax Rules, 1962, regulations, notifications, circulars, orders and Press Release by CBDT, Income Tax Department and the Ministry of Law and Justice, Government of India.

Section-35E: Deduction for expenditure on prospecting, etc., for certain minerals

Section 35E(1) of Income Tax Act

Where an assessee, being an Indian company or a person (other than a company) who is resident in India, is engaged in any operations relating to prospecting for, or extraction or production of, any mineral and incurs, after the 31st day of March, 1970, any expenditure specified in sub-section (2), the assessee shall, in accordance with and subject to the provisions of this section, be allowed for each one of the relevant previous years a deduction of an amount equal to one-tenth of the amount of such expenditure.

Section 35E(2) of Income Tax Act

The expenditure referred to in sub-section (1) is that incurred by the assessee after the date specified in that sub-section at any time during the year of commercial production and any one or more of the four years immediately preceding that year, wholly and exclusively on any operations relating to prospecting for any mineral or group of associated minerals specified in Part A or Part B, respectively, of the Seventh Schedule or on the development of a mine or other natural deposit of any such mineral or group of associated minerals :

Provided that there shall be excluded from such expenditure any portion thereof which is met directly or indirectly by any other person or authority and any sale, salvage, compensation or insurance moneys realised by the assessee in respect of any property or rights brought into existence as a result of the expenditure.

Section 35E(3) of Income Tax Act

Any expenditure—

  • (i) on the acquisition of the site of the source of any mineral or group of associated minerals referred to in sub-section (2) or of any rights in or over such site;
  • (ii) on the acquisition of the deposits of such mineral or group of associated minerals or of any rights in or over such deposits; or
  • (iii) of a capital nature in respect of any building, machinery, plant or furniture for which allowance by way of depreciation is admissible under section 32,

shall not be deemed to be expenditure incurred by the assessee for any of the purposes specified in sub-section (2).

Section 35E(4) of Income Tax Act

The deduction to be allowed under sub-section (1) for any relevant previous year shall be—

  • (a) an amount equal to one-tenth of the expenditure specified in sub-section (2) (such one-tenth being hereafter in this sub-section referred to as the instalment); or
  • (b) such amount as is sufficient to reduce to nil the income (as computed before making the deduction under this section) of that previous year arising from the commercial exploitation [whether or not such commercial exploitation is as a result of the operations or development referred to in sub-section (2)] of any mine or other natural deposit of the mineral or any one or more of the minerals in a group of associated minerals as aforesaid in respect of which the expenditure was incurred,

whichever amount is less:

Provided that the amount of the instalment relating to any relevant previous year, to the extent to which it remains unallowed, shall be carried forward and added to the instalment relating to the previous year next following and deemed to be part of that instalment, and so on, for succeeding previous years, so, however, that no part of any instalment shall be carried forward beyond the tenth previous year as reckoned from the year of commercial production.

Section 35E(5) of Income Tax Act

For the purposes of this section,—

  • (a) “operation relating to prospecting” means any operation undertaken for the purposes of exploring, locating or proving deposits of any mineral, and includes any such operation which proves to be infructuous or abortive;
  • (b) “year of commercial production” means the previous year in which as a result of any operation relating to prospecting, commercial production of any mineral or any one or more of the minerals in a group of associated minerals specified in Part A or Part B, respectively, of the Seventh Schedule, commences;
  • (c) “relevant previous years” means the ten previous years beginning with the year of commercial production.

Section 35E(6) of Income Tax Act

Where the assessee is a person other than a company or a co-operative society, no deduction shall be admissible under sub-section (1) unless the accounts of the assessee for the year or years in which the expenditure specified in sub-section (2) is incurred have been audited by an accountant as defined in the Explanation below sub-section (2) of section 288, before the specified date referred to in section 44AB and the assessee furnishes for the first year in which the deduction under this section is claimed, the report of such audit by that date in the prescribed form duly signed and verified by such accountant and setting forth such particulars as may be prescribed.

[Sub-section (6) of section 35E was amended w.e.f. 01.04.2020 by the Finance Act 2020]

Section 35E(7) of Income Tax Act

Where the undertaking of an Indian company which is entitled to the deduction under sub-section (1) is transferred, before the expiry of the period of ten years specified in sub-section (1), to another Indian company in a scheme of amalgamation—

  • (i) no deduction shall be admissible under sub-section (1) in the case of the amalgamating company for the previous year in which the amalgamation takes place; and
  • (ii) the provisions of this section shall, as far as may be, apply to the amalgamated company as they would have applied to the amalgamating company if the amalgamation had not taken place.

Section 35E(7A) of Income Tax Act

Where the undertaking of an Indian company which is entitled to the deduction under sub-section (1) is transferred, before the expiry of the period of ten years specified in sub-section (1), to another Indian company in a scheme of demerger,—

  • (i) no deduction shall be admissible under sub-section (1) in the case of the demerged company for the previous year in which the demerger takes place; and
  • (ii) the provisions of this section shall, as far as may be, apply to the resulting company as they would have applied to the demerged company, if the demerger had not taken place.

Section 35E(8) of Income Tax Act

Where a deduction under this section is claimed and allowed for any assessment year in respect of any expenditure specified in sub-section (2), the expenditure in respect of which deduction is so allowed shall not qualify for deduction under any other provision of this Act for the same or any other assessment year.


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