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B.B. Astekar Vs. Commissioner of Commercial Taxes, Mysore - Court Judgment

LegalCrystal Citation
SubjectSales Tax
CourtKarnataka High Court
Decided On
Case NumberS.M.R. 17 of 65-66, S.T.A. No. 2 of 1966
Judge
Reported in(1967)1MysLJ276; [1967]19STC462(Kar)
ActsMysore Sales Tax Act, 1957 - Sections 21
AppellantB.B. Astekar
RespondentCommissioner of Commercial Taxes, Mysore
Appellant AdvocateK. Srinivasan, Adv.
Respondent AdvocateShantha Raju, Adv.
Excerpt:
- land acquisition act, 1894.[c.a. no. 1/1894]. section 28: [n.k. patil, j] statutory benefits executing court declining to grant statutory benefits held, the executing court is not competent to decide the redressal of the grievances. petitioners are to make necessary applications either before the l.a.o., or before the deputy commissioner. it is needless to clarify that the petitioners are entitled for rent or damages for use of the lands by the beneficiary or the competent authority. it is for the petitioners to establish that the possession of lands had been taken much earlier to the issue of preliminary notification. .....is carrying on business of building bus bodies. in respect of amounts so earned by him, the assistant commercial tax officer of belgaum rejected his contention that the amount received by him was payment under works contract and, holding that the transaction amounted to sale of the completed bus body as a unit as originally agreed to between the parties, held him liable to pay sales tax in respect of a gross turnover of about rs. 30,000. in the order the reasons were stated by him as follows : 'after taking pros and cons of the case and bills issued, it is established beyond doubt that sale was one of built body as chattel and by no evidence it is proved that the entire proceeding was one of works contract.' 3. the petitioner appealed against the said order. in accepting that.....
Judgment:

Narayana Pai, J.

1. This is an appeal by an assessee to sales tax against the order made by the Commissioner of Commercial Taxes in Mysore, in suo motu exercise of his powers of revision under section 21 of the Mysore Sales Tax Act of 1957.

2. The petitioner, it is stated, is carrying on business of building bus bodies. In respect of amounts so earned by him, the Assistant Commercial Tax Officer of Belgaum rejected his contention that the amount received by him was payment under works contract and, holding that the transaction amounted to sale of the completed bus body as a unit as originally agreed to between the parties, held him liable to pay sales tax in respect of a gross turnover of about Rs. 30,000. In the order the reasons were stated by him as follows :

'After taking pros and cons of the case and bills issued, it is established beyond doubt that sale was one of built body as chattel and by no evidence it is proved that the entire proceeding was one of works contract.'

3. The petitioner appealed against the said order. In accepting that appeal and setting aside the assessment, the appellate authority (Assistant Commissioner of Commercial Taxes) set out the following reasons :-

'No written or regular agreements are said to have been entered with the customers. Bills issued to the customers show that the charges were for construction of motor bodies on the chassis, supplied by them. From the bills issued by the appellant, it would appear that the contracts were not for sale of motor bodies qua bodies'.

4. The Commissioner of Commercial Taxes in his order of revision, devoted a major portion of it to a statement of the facts and what he considered to be the law as declared by the Supreme Court in Patnaik's case : [1965]2SCR782 . Ultimately he concluded his order as follows :

'In his reply to the notice issued to him, the assessee has urged that the decision in Patnaik's case : [1965]2SCR782 is not applicable to his case and that as upheld by the Supreme Court itself the question whether a transaction amounts to 'sale' has to be decided on the facts of each case and the surrounding circumstances. The Assistant Commercial Tax Officer who examined the bills issued by the assessee and the other relevant factors has held that it is established beyond doubt that the contract was for the sale of a built body as chattel and that there is no evidence to show that the entire proceeding related to works contracts. The assessee has not produced before me any material on the basis of which his case can be distinguished from Patnaik's case : [1965]2SCR782 In the circumstances, the order of the Assistant Commissioner of Commercial Taxes is set aside and that of the Assistant Commercial Tax Officer restored.'

5. It will be noticed from the above that the appellate authority has correctly understood the legal position. Two decisions of the Supreme Court, one referred to above, and a subsequent one, not yet reported, in State of Gujarat v. Kailash Engineering (Civil Appeal No. 945 of 1965; since reported at : [1967]1SCR543 ), state the principles and emphasise that in matters of this nature, the central point for investigation is whether the agreement between the parties was for the sale and purchase of a specified movable article, whether immediately available or to be manufactured and delivered subsequently, or was one of work and labour. The essence of the matter is that a sale to be a sale liable to tax, the article agreed to be sold and the article actually sold must be the same. Whether the agreement is only for work or for actual purchase of the article ultimately or finally manufactured is, as their Lordships pointed out, a matter of inference to be drawn after an examination of the relevant terms and conditions of the agreement between the parties. If, therefore, there is no error either in the statement of the law made by the appellate authority or the approach made to the facts, the only way in which it could be said to have committed an error of law is by showing that the inference on fact drawn by it is either devoid of support in the evidence or an impossible inference on the evidence placed before it.

6. The order of the Commissioner passed in revision is singularly devoid of any attempt to examine whether or not the appellate authority's order suffered from illegality. In it, there is not even a reference to the reasons stated by the appellate authority, which we have extracted. On the contrary, all that the revisional authority had done is to express its approval of the original authority's order. It is not the function of revision. The order that the Commissioner was proposing to revise was the order of the appellate authority. He could exercise his powers of revision and set aside that order only if he finds that it suffers from any illegality or impropriety or is the result of any irregularity in the procedure followed. As the order of the Commissioner does not disclose that he has examined or scrutinized the order of the appellate authority from this point of view, we have no alternative but to hold that the order does not disclose any reason empowering the Commissioner to interfere with the appellate authority's order in revision.

7. This appeal is, therefore, allowed, and the order of the Commissioner passed in revision is set aside. The appellant will have his costs. Advocate's fee Rs. 100.

8. Appeal allowed.


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