SALIG RAM RAIKUMAR Vs. COMMISSIONER OF INCOME TAX, EAST PUNJAB, DELHI AND AJMER-MERWARA, DELHI
HIGH COURT OF PUNJAB AND HARYANA
Salig Ram Raikumar
Commissioner Of Income Tax, East Punjab, Delhi And Ajmer -Merwara, Delhi
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Soni, J. -
(1.) ON 21st July 1949, the Appellate Income -tax Tribunal referred the following questions to this Court :
1. Whether there is material or evidence on the record to come to the conclusion that the main purpose of the separation of the business was the reduction of excess profits tax payable by the family ?
(2.) WHETHER on the facts and in the circumstances of the case, S. 10A, Excess Profits Tax Act, has been rightly applied?
2. Before the reference came up for hearing today an application had been put in by the assessees that the reference had with it no documents and they submitted a list of documents which should be attached in order to answer the reference. Mr. Sikri on behalf of the Department submitted that it was not necessary to have any documents, that the statement of the case was sufficient in order to answer the questions and that as a matter of fact this Court had no power to have any documents added.
The questions themselves are of a nature that it is impossible to answer them without the documents. The first question is whether there is material or evidence on the record to come to a certain conclusion. The appellate Tribunal has stated some facts and then stated that this was the question which this Court should answer. Obviously this Court cannot answer such a question unless the Tribunal had told us what the documents were which they had examined and what were the statements or a resume of the statements which the witnesses had made or the documents produced by them from which certain conclusions had been arrived at, which conclusions may or may not be binding on the assessee or on this Court. Unless the case is complete in itself the reference cannot be answered. The Tribunal referred to the order of 24th September 1943, on which the reference has been made. When that order is read this is what is stated in that order :
On our refusal to adjourn the appeal, the appellant's counsel said that he had nothing to add and no fresh facts to bring to our notice other than those that were the subject -matter of the decision before the Tribunal. We, therefore, examined the previous order of the Tribunal and are in entire agreement with the finding of fact and the line of reasoning of the Tribunal as arrived at in the above mentioned order.
(3.) THE Tribunal was referring to the order of a previous Tribunal which they were looking at. In this order of 24th September 1948, the Tribunal do not say that they have examined the facts which the other Tribunal had examined and having examined the facts they then examine the order and then they are in agreement with the reasoning given by the other Tribunal. Neither the Tribunal gives us the facts nor the Tribunal supplies us with the material, and if neither the facts nor the materials are supplied how can the Tribunal ask this Court to answer this question. We, therefore, direct that a better statement of the case be sent to this Court accompanied by a various documents that are necessary to be examined in order that the questions put to us be answered. In this connection reference may be made to a judgment of the Bombay High Court printed in : 52 Bom. 669 : (A. I. R. 1928 Bom. 510 in the case of Commissioner of Income -tax, Bombay Presidency v. The Ahmedabad New Cotton Mills Co, Ltd. In that case Marten C. J., said :
But I will ask counsel for the Crown and the income -tax authorities to consider whether in these heavy cases involving lacs of rupees of public money, and for the matter of that lacs of tax payable by private individuals or companies, is it Lot advisable to have the references submitted to the Court stated with all that precision and with all the relevant documents which a proper determination of the case requires. I think that in many respects the cases stated by the Income -tax Commissioners in England may be regarded as models of lucidity in what is admittedly a very difficult subject.;
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