SHYAM SUNDAR JALAN AND ASIATIC OXYGEN AND ACETYLENE CO LTD Vs. STATE
LAWS(CAL)-1976-1-22
HIGH COURT OF CALCUTTA
Decided on January 27,1976

SHYAM SUNDAR JALAN, ASIATIC OXYGEN AND ACETYLENE CO. LTD Appellant
VERSUS
STATE Respondents


Referred Judgements :-

R K DALMIA VS. DELHI ADMINISTRATION [REFERRED TO]



Cited Judgements :-

O P SINGHI VS. STATE OF SIKKIM [LAWS(SIK)-1978-8-1] [REFERRED TO]


JUDGEMENT

Sudhanmay Basu, J. - (1.)These are six rules arising out of applications made under Sections 397, 401 and 482 of the Code of Criminal Procedure, 1973, for quashing complaints under Sections 276(b), 276B, 276(d) and 276D of the Income-tax Act, 1961, and some orders passed by the learned Chief Presidency Magistrate, Calcutta.
(2.)It appears that complaints were filed against the directors of the Asiatic Oxygen and Acetylene Company Limited and Asiatic Oxygen Company Limited and one Mr. K.C. Gangwal, designated as the principal officer of the said companies, for failure to deduct income-tax from the salary of the employees, for failure to submit returns in time, for failure to deduct income-tax and super-tax on dividends for certain period under various sections of the Income-tax Act. To be precise, the Revision Case No. 271 of 1975 relates to a complaint for delay in submitting returns under Section 276(b) of the Income-tax Act. The returns were due on April 30, 1971, but the same were filed on December 12, 1972, and the complaint was filed on the 19th of September, 1973. The complaints were made against Shyam Sundar Jalan, H.L. Dey (since deceased) and Bal Krishna Jalan described as directors and one Mr. K.C. Gangwal, principal officer. In Revision Case No. 272 of 1975, complaint is made against Shyam Sudar Jalan, H.L. Dey and Durga Narayan Kapur as directors and one Mr. Kapur Chandra Gangwal as principal officer. The same is for failure to submit return in time under Section 276(b). The return was to be filed on April 13, 1966, but it was actually filed on November 2, 1972, and the complaint was lodged on September 19, 1973. Revision Case No. 273 of 1975 arises out of a complaint against the Asiatic Oxygen and Acetylene Company Limited, Shyam Sundar Jalan, H.L. Dey and Bal Krishna Jalan as directors and K.C. Gangwal as principal officer. It is for failure to deduct income-tax out of salaries for the month of March, 1967, and is under Section 276B. Similarly, Revision Case No. 275 of 1975 also involves Section 276B for failure to deduct salaries for the month of December, 1967, which was actually paid on November 18, 1972. The persons complained against were M/s. Asiatic Oxygen Ltd., Shyam Sundar Jalan, H.L. Dey, Durga Narain Kapoor as directors and K.C. Gangwal as principal officer. Civil Revision No. 276 of 1975 involves a complaint under Section 276(d) for failure to deduct income-tax out of salaries for the month of June, 1967. The same was paid on November 8, 1972, and the complaint was made on September 25, 1973. The persons complained against are the same as in Civil Revision Case No. 275 of 1975. Civil Revision No. 274 of 1975 involves complaint for failure to deduct income-tax and super-tax on dividend for the year ending on the 31st of March, 1967, under Section 276(d). The amount was due on April 8, 1967, but was paid on October 18, 1973. The complaint was filed on 21st of May, 1974..........
(3.)The next point urged by Mr. Banerjee was that a company can have only one principal officer. According to him, more than one principal officer is not contemplated under the existing laws. Directors are not principal officers but under the Income-tax Act any director may be designated as a principal officer. In these cases the sanctioning authority accorded sanction against Mr. K.C. Gangwal as principal officer and against others as directors. He referred in this connection to Section 2, Sub-section (35), of the Income-tax Act which defines a principal officer. In this connection he also referred to Section 282, Sub-section 2(b), of the Income-tax Act according to which a notice or requisition under the Act may be addressed in the case of a local authority or company to the principal officer thereof. Section 2(35), which states what a principal officer means runs as follows:
" ' principal officer', used with reference to a local authority or a company or any other public body or any association of persons or any body of individuals, means-- (a) the secretary, treasurer, manager or agent of the authority, company, association or body, or (b) any person connected with the management or administration of the local authority, company, association or body upon whom the Income-tax Officer has served a notice of his intention of treating him as the principal officer thereof. "

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