HYDERABAD AGRICULTURAL COOPERATIVE ASSOCIATION LIMITED Vs. STATE OF ANDHRA PRADESH
SALES TAX TRIBUNAL
Hyderabad Agricultural Cooperative Association Limited
STATE OF ANDHRA PRADESH
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J. Shyam Sundar Rao, Chairman -
(1.) THIS is an appeal filed against the Revisional Orders of Deputy Commissioner (CT), Abids Division, Hyderabad in R.R. No. 13/2003 -04, dated 11 -8 -2003. The appellant is M/s. Hyderabad Agricultural Cooperative Association Limited (in short HACA), Hyderabad. It is on the rolls of Commercial Tax Officer, Basheer Bagh Circle, Hyderabad. The Commercial Tax Officer passed final assessment order granting exemption on the coconuts sold to Sri Bramaramba Mallikarjuna Swamy Devasthanams, Srisailam.
(2.) THE Deputy Commissioner (CT), Abids Division, Hyderabad on scrutiny of the assessment records observed that the Commercial Tax Officer wrongly allowed the exemption ignoring the observations made by the Vigilance & Enforcement Officer, Kurnool. Hence, issued pre -revision show cause notice, proposing to revise the assessment under the powers conferred under Section 20(2) of the APGST Act, calling for the objections of the assessee. Thereupon, the assessee filed objections stating that the appellant is not the last dealer, who purchased the coconuts and hence not liable to pay tax. It is their contention that they sold coconuts to Sri Bramaramba Mallikarjuna Swamy Devasthanams, Srisailam, who in turn sold them to the local dealers of Srisailam. But however, the Deputy Commissioner rejected the contention raised by the appellant holding that the appellant failed to prove that the goods have suffered tax at the hands of the last dealer and confirmed the proposal made in the revision show cause notice, directing the Commercial Tax Officer, Basheer Bagh Circle to give effect to the orders. Aggrieved by the same, the present appeal is preferred before this Tribunal. In the appeal grounds it has been contended as follows:
The Deputy Commissioner erred in holding that the appellant is last purchaser of the coconuts on the ground that the immediate buyer is Sri Saila Bramaramba Mallikarjuna Devasthanams, Srisailam, who are not dealers. Merely because Devasthanam is not a dealer, the appellant does not become the last purchaser. It is not the case of the Deputy Commissioner that the Devasthanam has consumed the coconuts. The Sales Tax Authorities have to trace the taxable event with reference to the coconuts as such and not on the basis of status of the immediate buyer. The tax liability is on the subsequent purchasers and the appellant cannot be treated as last purchaser by any stretch of imagination. The reasoning of the Deputy Commissioner that the appellant is liable to pay tax, do not justify. The Deputy Commissioner erred in disregarding the list of traders who purchased coconuts from Devasthanam as provided by Devasthanam. Section 7A of APGST Act has no application since it applies only to goods at first purchase point or first sale point.
(3.) AT the time of hearing, it has been contended by the learned counsel for the appellant that under Entry 5 of Third Schedule, coconuts are exigible to tax at last purchase point. It is the submission that the appellant is not the last purchaser, but the last purchasers of the coconuts is the dealers in Srisailam, who purchased the coconuts from Sree Saila Brahmaramba Mallikarjuna Swamy Devasthanam, to whom the appellant effected sales of coconuts. It is also argued that merely because either Devasthanam or the dealers to whom Devasthanam sold coconuts are not registered dealers, for the reason the last purchasers are not registered dealers, the taxable event cannot be shifted to the appellant. It is also argued that the burden of proof as required under Section 7A will not cast any obligation on the appellant to prove that the goods already suffered tax since under Section 7A, a dealer has to prove that the goods already suffered tax at the first purchase point or at the first sale point.;
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