Decided on November 11,1999

Modern Hotel, Jammu Appellant
STATE OF JANDK Respondents


- (1.) THESE appeals involve identical questions of law and facts are being disposed of by this common order. In LPA (W) No. 213/99, the appellants writ petitioners have called in question the order dated March 23, 1999 passed in OWPs No. 1007/91 and 491/90. In LPA (W) No. 426/99, the appellants have challenged the order dated May 31, 1999 passed in OWP No. 288/91, In LPA (W) No, 386/99 order dated 30 -06 -1999 passed in OWP No. 158/99 has been challenged by the appellants, whereby all the writ petitions came to be dismissed.
(2.) THE appellants, by means of their writ petitions challenged the vires of SRO408 of 1983 issued by the respondents, whereby fee for granting or renewal of a bar licence has been levied at Rs. 25,000/ - p.a. w.e.f. August 1, 1983. The appellants in the LPA No. 213/99 also sought to quash the Order No. 135 -GRF dated 19 -06 -1990 whereby the respondent -State has directed the recovery of arrears of licence fee levied under SRO -408 of 1983 and fixed installments for the recovery together with interest. They further sought to quash notice dated 22 -08 -1990 issued by the Excise and Taxation Officer, City Excise, Range Jammu, demanding payment of the arrears of the licence fee together with interest for the period from 1984 -85 upto 1988 -89. The appellants in the LPA No. 426/99 besides seeking to quash the SRO -408 of 1983, prayed before the Learned Single Judge to quash the notices issued by the respondent -Excise & Taxation Officer, City Excise. Range Jammu and the Collector of Recoveries under Land Revenue Act 1996, for recovery of panel interest amounting to Rs. 63,900/ -. In LPA (W) No. 386/99 the additional ground taken is that the appellant has already paid Rs. 31,276/ - to the respondents which has not been remitted against the demand made.
(3.) THE Learned Single Judge after hearing the learned counsel for the parties dismissed the writ petitions up -holding the notice of Recovery. The appellants have challenged the orders under Appeals on the ground that the SRO -408 of 1983 issued by the Respondent -State in exercise of its power U/Ss 16 & 17 of the J&K Excise Act imposing a fee for grant or renewal of bar licence to the tune of Rs. 25,000/ - per annum was stayed by the court in the writ petition No. 737 of 1983 titled Å ''Ram Mohan Singh Verma & Ors Vs. State of J&K & Ors  and during the period of stay of the operation of SRO -408 of 1983 the respondents have not made any demand for payment of fee. The appellants have deposited the amount in terms of the earlier SRO -184 of 1980. Therefore, the respondents in law cannot raise such a demand and effect recovery. The appellants in the LPA No. 426/ 99 have also pleaded that they deposited more but was due to the respondents as licence fee in accordance with SRO 184 of 1980. The notice issued by the respondents are, therefore, illegal and the appellants are not under obligation to pay the licence fee as demanded under the impugned notifications as no demand at the proper time was made by the respondents. We have heard the learned counsel for the parties and perused the record.;

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