COMMISSIONER OF CENTRAL EXCISE Vs. USHA BRECO LTD
HIGH COURT OF UTTARAKHAND
COMMISSIONER OF CENTRAL EXCISE
USHA BRECO LTD.
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(1.) This appeal and the reference raise the same question of law and, accordingly, are decided together. Assessee has got two establishments; both are situated in the town of Haridwar; one at Mansa Devi temple and the other at Chandi Devi temple. In these two establishments, assessee has installed ropeways. In order to use these ropeways, one is required to pay a fee to the assessee. This fee is not chargeable as service tax under the Finance Act, 1994. In addition to this service, assessee provides facility of transportation to persons desiring to obtain ropeway services both at Mansa Devi temple and Chandi Devi temple from Mansa Devi to Chandi Devi or vice versa, upon payment of a fee. The distance between Mansa Devi and Chandi Devi is about 3.75 kilometers. This distance is covered by vehicles. For that, assessee charges its clients. Appellant contended that this service will come within the meaning of 'tour' and, accordingly, service tax is payable thereon. Though in terms of the definition provided in the appropriate law 'tour' means 'journey from one place to another, irrespective of the distance between such places', but in order to levy tax, holding out that the service is tour, it is to be shown that the service has been provided by a tour operator. The question, therefore, was, whether the assessee was a tour operator or not? The Tribunal has held that it is not. The fact remains that the assessee provides transportation facility from one of its establishments to another establishment of the assessee. This facility is not the main business of the assessee, but is an ancillary to its main business of providing ropeway service. By providing the facility of transportation from Mansa Devi to Chandi Devi and vice versa, assessee did not carry out tour operation. It facilitated journey of its clients from one place to the other as is being done by the passenger transporters while carrying out their transportation business.
(2.) That being the situation, there is no scope of interference. The appeal and the reference fail and the same are dismissed.;
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