Decided on April 22,1998



M.Ramakrishna, Chairman - (1.) THESE three appeals have been filed by M/s. P. Das & Company, Visakhapatnam, against the orders of the Deputy Commissioner (CT), Visakhapatnam, revising the orders of the Commercial Tax Officer, Kurupam Market Circle, Visakhapatnam. The details are as follows: - - The appellant was a dealer in timber and firewood. It purchased timber within the State and also outside the State. It sold timber logs and also sizes cut from the logs. The assessment was made on the basis of the accounts produced by the appellant. The revising authority found some variations in the opening and closing stocks and also in the profit margin in the first sales and second sales of timber and sizes. He issued notices for revision. In reply to the show cause notices, the appellant sought time on the ground that the Managing Partner had gone to the native place in the State of Gujarat to attend the last rites of his father -in -law, who expired and also sought for opportunity for personal hearing. As seen from the revision order the case was actually posted on a holiday. The personal hearing was not conceded and orders were passed on the basis of the reply to the show cause notice on the ground that the appellant had not filed any recorded evidence in support of the contentions raised in the reply to the show cause notices. The Authorised Representative has stated that the appellant wanted to produce, at the time of personal hearing, books of account and other record in support of the contentions raised in the reply to the show cause notice.
(2.) IN the case of Sri Venkataramana Manure Company v. The Deputy Commissioner of Commercial Taxes, Guntur And Others : (1978) 42 STC 189, their Lordships of the Andhra Pradesh High Court have observed that giving personal hearing is not necessarily an ingredient of the principles of natural justice and it depends on the facts of each case; that there may be cases where it may be necessary to hear the assessee and the Deputy Commissioner may give him a personal hearing; that in certain cases, the assessee may ask for personal hearing and the Deputy Commissioner(CT) may give it. In that case it was held that the Deputy Commissioner (CT) should have been given personal hearing to the assessee before disposing of the revision even though the assessee did not ask for it. In the present cases the reply of the appellant to the revision show cause notice should have been examined with reference to the entries of the books of accounts is evident from the observation of the Deputy Commissioner (CT) to the effect that evidence is required to substantiate the contentions raised in reply to show cause notice. The books of account could have been produced only when a personal hearing was granted with an opportunity to produce the books of account. In the result, the appeals are allowed, the impugned revision orders of the Deputy Commissioner (CT) are set -aside and the matter is remanded to the revising authority to give an opportunity to the appellant to produce evidence in support of its case and also the books of account and other records and pass orders afresh after examining the books of accounts and other records. Dictated to the Stenographer, transcribed by him and pronounced in the Open Court on this the 22nd day of April, 1998.;

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