Decided on March 04,2011

Epitome Petrochemical Pvt. Ltd. And Another Appellant
Commissioner Of Sales Tax, West Bengal And Others Respondents


Pranab Kumar Deb, J. (Chairman) - (1.) THIS application under section 8 of the West Bengal Taxation Tribunal Act, 1987 has been filed, challenging the impugned order dated December 7, 2010 passed by the Joint Commissioner of Sales Tax, Siliguri Charge, Siliguri.
(2.) PETITIONER No. 1, M/s. JNRT Commercial (P.) Ltd., as disclosed in the application, was an importer/re -seller of packing materials and containers which had been commonly known as "pet preform". It is claimed that the particular item was a miniature form of plastic bottle which was used in packing pharmaceuticals, oils, mineral water, cold drinks, etc. The said item was manufactured from plastic granules. The "pet preforms" were then expanded by blowing blasts of heat and thereby it took the regular shape of plastic bottles used for packing cold drinks, mineral water, oils, pharmaceuticals, etc. The petitioners concerned went on paying taxes regularly at four per cent. It is alleged that on December 7, 2010, the Deputy Commissioner of Sales Tax, Siliguri Charge, Siliguri, issued a notice in form 20, with a direction upon the petitioners to pay Rs. 47,96,167 for the quarter ending on December 31, 2010, without explaining as to why imposition of tax at 12 per cent had been made. It is claimed that instead of revoking the order, respondent No. 2 demanded advance tax at 12 per cent without issuance of any notice. The petitioners had been forced to pay advance tax at four per cent to keep the transactions going on, as alleged by them.
(3.) APPEARING on behalf of the petitioners, Mr. Bhattacharyya has submitted that in issuing the demand notice, respondent No. 2 failed to appreciate that the "pet preform" was shaped like a little bottle or cylinder and it was expanded by the buyers in their factories to have a larger shape according to their requirement and desire. Simply because of its being called "pet preform", it does not lose its character as a container which is being basically used for containing or packing liquids. As the containers and packing materials are categorized and specified in Sl. No. 155 of Schedule C of Part III to the VAT Act, 2003, these are to be taxed at the rate of four per cent. The "pet preform" basically a container, it cannot be treated otherwise for being charged at 12.5 per cent.;

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