BANARSI LAL Vs. PROVINCE OF BIHAR
HIGH COURT OF PATNA
PROVINCE OF BIHAR.
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RAMASWAMI AND SARJOO PRASAD, JJ. -
(1.) THIS case is stated by the Board of Revenue under Section 21(3) of the Bihar Sales Tax Act (VI of 1944) which corresponds to Section 25(3) of the Act of 1947.
(2.) THE following questions have been referred : (1) whether, in view of the Board's finding that the assessee had not a taxable business up to 31st of March, 1945, the assessment upto the 30th June, 1945, was legal; and (2) whether the refusal of the Board in its powers of revision to go into the questions of fact is legal, specially in view of the fact that the Board's powers of revision under the Act in question have not been defined specifically.
The assessee is a dealer in betel and sweetmeat resident of Mahalla Kadam Kuan, Patna. He was assessed to sales tax on a taxable turnover of Rs. 13,230 for the period from 1st October, 1944, to 31st March, 1945, and on a taxable turnover of Rs. 26,460 for the period from 1st April, 1945, to 31st March, 1946, by the Sales Tax Officer, Patna Urban Circle. The assessee preferred appeals to the Assistant Commissioner of Sales Tax but the appeals were dismissed. In revision the Deputy Commissioner of Commercial Taxes remitted the penalties imposed on the assessee but otherwise upheld the assessments made by the Sales Tax Officer. The assessee then moved the Board of Revenue who after hearing the parties remitted the tax for the period from 1st October, 1944, to 31st March, 1945, but affirmed the assessment made for the period 1st April, 1945, to 31st March, 1946.
(3.) AS regards the first question it was pointed out by Mr. Ramanugrah Prasad on behalf of the assessee that the assessment for the period from 1st October, 1944, to 30th June, 1945, was illegal upon the finding of the Board that the assessee had no taxable business upto 31st March, 1945. Learned counsel founded his argument upon Section 4(1) and Section 4(2) of the Bihar Act VI of 1944. Section 4(1) states : "Subject to the provisions of Sections 5 and 6 and with effect from such date as the Provincial Government may, by notification in the Official Gazette, appoint, being not earlier than thirty days after the date of the said notification, every dealer whose gross turnover during the year immediately preceding the commencement of this Act exceeded Rs. 5,000 shall be liable to pay tax under this Act on sales effected after the date so notified". Section 4(2) enacts : "Every dealer to whom sub-section (1) does not apply shall be liable to pay tax under this Act with effect from three months after the commencement of the year immediately following that during which his gross turnover first exceeded Rs. 5,000". It is undisputed in this case that Section 4(1) is not applicable. It follows that under Section 4(2) the assessee is not liable to pay tax with effect from three months after the commencement of the year immediately following that during which his gross turnover first exceeded Rs. 5,000. Under Section 2(j) "year" means financial year. It is therefore manifest that the assessee is not liable to pay tax for the period 31st March, 1945, to 30th June, 1945. This question must be therefore answered in favour of the assessee.;
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