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Commissioner of Income-tax, Bombay Residency Vs. Ahmedabad Millowners Association. - Court Judgment

LegalCrystal Citation
SubjectDirect Taxation
CourtMumbai
Decided On
Case NumberReference No. 16 of 1938
Reported in[1939]7ITR369(Bom)
AppellantCommissioner of Income-tax, Bombay Residency
RespondentAhmedabad Millowners Association.
Excerpt:
- section 3: [s.b. mhase, d.s. bhosale & a.s. oka, jj] offences of atrocities - complaint under held, merely because the caste of the accused is not mentioned in the fir stating whether he belongs to scheduled caste or scheduled tribe, it cannot be a ground for quashing the complaint. after ascertaining the facts during he course of investigation it is always open to the investigating officer to record tht the accused either belongs to or does not belongs to schedule caste or scheduled tribe. after final opinion is formed, it is open to the court to either accept the same or take cognizance. even if the charge sheet is filed at the time of consideration of the charge, it si open to the accused to bring to the notice of the court that the materials do not show that the accused does not..........since it is an indivisible entity. i am disposed to agree that if one takes merely the dictionary meaning, 'individual' would include a limited company, although i think so to use the work would not be in accordance with its popular use by people speaking the english language. but whatever the dictionary or popular meaning may be, we have to deal with the word in the context in which it appears in the income-tax act. the phrase in section 3 is : 'income, profits and gains of every individual, hindu undivided family, company, firm or other association of individuals'. the same words appear in various places in the act, including section 55 and 56 under which super-tax is charged, although in those sections the disjunctive 'or' is used before 'other association of individuals' instead of.....
Judgment:

BEAUMONT, C.J. - This is a reference by the Commissioner of Income-tax under Section 66 (2) of the Income-tax Act, in which he raised the question : 'Whether the association constituted as aforementioned and having the members mentioned in paragraph 4 hereof has been correctly treated by the Assistant Commissioner as chargeable to income-tax under Section 3 of the Act as being an 'association of individuals'.

The Association in question is the Ahmedabad Millowners Association, and according to the finding of the learned Commissioner it consisted, during the year of assessment, of 61 members, 60 of whom were limited companies and one was an individual person. It is clear, therefore, that if the Association is to be assessed as an association of individuals, it must be on the basis that a limited company is an individual for the purposes of the charging section in the Income-tax Act. The learned Commissioner, relying on the dictionary meaning of 'individual,' holds that a company is an individual, since it is an indivisible entity. I am disposed to agree that if one takes merely the dictionary meaning, 'individual' would include a limited company, although I think so to use the work would not be in accordance with its popular use by people speaking the English language. But whatever the dictionary or popular meaning may be, we have to deal with the word in the context in which it appears in the Income-tax Act. The phrase in Section 3 is : 'income, profits and gains of every individual, Hindu undivided family, company, firm or other association of individuals'. The same words appear in various places in the Act, including Section 55 and 56 under which super-tax is charged, although in those sections the disjunctive 'or' is used before 'other association of individuals' instead of the copulative 'and'. The question is whether 'other association of individuals' includes an association of companies. It seems to me quite clear on the context that it cannot do so. 'Individual' where first used, must mean human-being, Hindu undivided family, company, firm and other association of human-beings'. One cannot give to the word 'individuals' in the expression 'association of individuals' a different meaning to that which the word 'individual' bears where it appears in the same phrase.

In my opinion, therefore, the answer to the question raise by the learned Commissioner must be in the negative. The assessee to get cost, to be paid by the Commissioner, on the original side scale.

B. J. WADIA, J. - I agree.

Reference answered


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