THE BERHAMPUR REGIONAL MARKETTING CO-OPERATIVE SOCIETY LTD. Vs. SALES TAX OFFICER AND ORS.
HIGH COURT OF ORISSA
The Berhampur Regional Marketting Co -Operative Society Ltd.
SALES TAX OFFICER And ORS.
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G.K. Misra, J. -
(1.) AFTER the close of the hearing, Mr, Roy and the learned Standing Counsel agreed that in this case the Court should give direction for expeditious disposal of the appeal pending before the Tribunal as well as the refund application pending before the Commissioner. In view of this prayer, only short facts relevant to those prayers may be noticed.
(2.) IN respect of quarter ending 30 -9 -1962 the Petitioner had paid sales tax of Rs. 24,252.79 paise. On assessment, the Sales Tax Officer held on 30 -3 -1964 that only Rs. 1468.18 paise is payable as tax. He accordingly said that Rs. 22,784.61 paise is refundable to the Petitioner. The dealer filed an application for refund on 28 -9 -1964 and went up in appeal against the assessment order which was dismissed by the Assistant Commissioner of Sales Tax, who is the first Appellate authority. Against the order of the Assistant Commissioner, the dealer has filed an appeal before the Tribunal, and the State of Orissa has filed a cross objection. Thus the matter has not reached finality, and it is not known as to what amount of tax would be payable by the dealer. Section 14 -D of the Orissa Sales Tax Act, 1947 lays down:
Where an order giving rise to refund is the subject -matter of an appeal or further proceeding under this Act, the Commissioner, may, if he is of opinion that the grant of refund is likely to adversely affect the revenue withhold the refund till such time as he deems proper.
There is no dispute that the order of the Sales Tax Officer confirmed by the first Appellate authority giving rise to refund is the subject matter of an appeal before the Tribunal. The Commissioner has, however, not passed an order that he is of opinion that the grant of refund is likely to adversely affect the revenue. Consequently, the refund could not have been withheld. Thus, it is necessary, before any refund is directed, that both the appeal and the application for refund must be disposed of.
(3.) WE accordingly allow the writ application and issue a writ of mandamus to the Commissioner of Sales Tax (Opp. Party No. 2) to dispose of the refund application within five weeks from today. The Tribunal would dispose of the appeal within three weeks.;
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