FORT GLOSTER INDUSTRIES LTD Vs. MEMBER BOARD OF REVENUE
HIGH COURT OF CALCUTTA
FORT GLOSTER INDUSTRIES LTD.
MEMBER, BOARD OF REVENUE
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P.B.Mukharji, A.C.J. -
(1.) This is a complex and interesting case of reference to the High Court under Section 21(1) of the Bengal Finance (Sales Tax) Act, 1941. The following question is set out in the statement of case for a decision by this court :- Whether on the facts and circumstances of the case proceeds of the sales made through the canteen run by the petitioner for the benefit of its employees should form any part of the petitioner's turnover?
(2.) The facts lie within a small compass. The name of the dealer is Fort Gloster Industries Limited of 21 Strand Road, Calcutta. It is a registered dealer under the Bengal Finance (Sales Tax) Act. The company has to run under statutory obligation a canteen for the benefit of its workers under Section 46 of the Factories Act, 1948. The dealer included in its gross turnover the sum of Rs. 46,258 as canteen sales for the assessment for the period ending 31st March, 1957. Out of this sum he claimed exemption for the sum of Rs. 15,426 under Section 5(2)(a)(i) of the Act on the ground that this amount represented sales of cooked food.
(3.) The Commercial Tax Officer assessed the dealer by his order dated the 20th March, 1958 and allowed only 50 per cent. of the claim under Section 5(2)(a)(i) of the Act. The dealer appealed from that assessment to the Assistant Commissioner, Commercial Taxes, In that appeal before the Assistant Commissioner the dealer contended that the whole of the sum of Rs. 46,258 representing the canteen sales should be excluded from the admitted gross turnover and the taxable turnover. The argument was that the sales of foodstuff by the canteen were not effected by the petitioner as a dealer in the course of its business of selling goods which were jute ; secondly, that there was no profit-motive in these transactions in the canteen sales. The Assistant Commissioner rejected the dealer's contention. But he allowed a further exemption of Rs. 7,713 under Section 5(2)(a)(i) of the Act. From that order the dealer filed a revision petition before the Commissioner, Commercial Taxes. Before the Commissioner in the revision matter the dealer repeated its arguments made before the Assistant Commissioner. The Additional Commissioner who dealt with the case rejected the revision petition by his order dated the 20th May, 1960. From there again the dealer filed a revision petition before the Board of Revenue, West Bengal. The Board of Revenue also rejected the dealer's petition and upheld the order dated the 20th May, 1960, passed by the Additional Commissioner, Commercial Taxes. The dealer thereafter required the Board to refer to the High Court the question of law involved in this controversy. Upon that the above question has been set down for decision by this court.;
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