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Rastapur Sharanappa Vs. Controller of Estate Duty - Court Judgment

LegalCrystal Citation
SubjectDirect Taxation
CourtKarnataka High Court
Decided On
Case NumberT.R.C. No. 1 of 1968
Judge
Reported in[1970]77ITR800(KAR); [1970]77ITR800(Karn)
ActsEstate Duty Act, 1953 - Sections 34(1)
AppellantRastapur Sharanappa
RespondentController of Estate Duty
Appellant AdvocateK. Srinivasan, Adv.
Respondent AdvocateS.R. Rajasekaramurthy, Adv. for ;G.R. Ethirajulu Naidu, Adv.
Excerpt:
- labour & services. dismissal from service: [subhash b. adi, j] dispensation of disciplinary enquiry - electricity (supply) act (54 of 1948) section 79 and karnataka electricity board employees (conduct, discipline, control & appeal) regulations, 1987, regulation 14 petitioner alleged to have been involved in theft - criminal complaint also lodged in this regard - however, based on same evidence criminal court held that charge of theft is not proved and also recovery is not proved by prosecution - disciplinary authority relying upon admission of criminal charge by petitioner before investigation officer and in charge sheet, passing order of dismissal held, not proper, particularly, when enquiry was dispensed with and petitioner had no opportunity before disciplinary authority. further,..........the joint family business. since the deceased died on august 19, 1961, the assistant controller of estate duty held that the computation of the estate duty had to be made under section 34(1)(c) of the act. in computing the value of the deceased's share in the commission business, the assistant controller of estate duty added rs, 10,000 as the value of the deceased's one-half share in the goodwill of the commission business. on appeal, the appellate controller of estate duty upheld that the value of the goodwill had to be included in the dutiable estate, but reduced the value of the deceased's one-half share to rs. 8,250. before the appellate controller, the accountable person contended that section 34(1)(c) of the act was unconstitutional, being violative of article 14 of the.....
Judgment:

Govinda Bhat, J.

1. This is a reference under Section 64(1) of the Estate Duty Act, 1953. One Rastapur Muniappa died on August 19, 1961. The deceased along with his son constituted a Hindu undivided family at the time of his death. The deceased had a one-half share in the joint family business. Since the deceased died on August 19, 1961, the Assistant Controller of Estate Duty held that the computation of the estate duty had to be made under Section 34(1)(c) of the Act. In computing the value of the deceased's share in the commission business, the Assistant Controller of Estate Duty added Rs, 10,000 as the value of the deceased's one-half share in the goodwill of the commission business. On appeal, the Appellate Controller of Estate Duty upheld that the value of the goodwill had to be included in the dutiable estate, but reduced the value of the deceased's one-half share to Rs. 8,250. Before the Appellate Controller, the accountable person contended that Section 34(1)(c) of the Act was unconstitutional, being violative of article 14 of the Constitution of India. The Appellate Controller held that the estate duty computation had to be made under Section 34(1)(c) of the Act since the Amending Act of 1958 had come into force from I960, before the date of the death of the deceased. Against the order of the Appellate Controller the accountable person preferred an appeal to the Tribunal; but before the Tribunal, the accountable person was not represented, and the Tribunal disposed of the appeal after hearing the arguments of the departmental representative. After hearing the arguments of the departmental representative, the Tribunal held that the goodwill was an asset and that the value determined at Rs. 8,250 by the Appellate Controller was quite fair and reasonable and called for no interference. The Tribunal upheld the computation under Section 34(1)(c).

2. The following questions of law have been referred for our opinion under Section 64(1) of the Act at the instance of the accountable person :

'(1) Whether, on the facts and in the circumstances of the case, goodwill of the commission business was an asset, value of half of which was to be included in the dutiable estate of the deceased ?

(2) Whether, on the facts and in the circumstances of the case, was the computation of the estate duty under Section 34(1)(c) legal and valid '

3. On the first question there can be no doubt that goodwill of the business is an asset. It was not seriously pressed before us that such goodwill is not an asset. The value of the half share of the deceased as computed by the Tribunal is not open to question before us. Therefore, question No. 1 is answered in the affirmative, in favour of the revenue.

4. Regarding question No. 2, the question that was urged by the account-able person before the Appellate Controller was that Section 34(1)(c) of the Act was unconstitutional, being violative of article 14 of the Constitution of India. It was not open to the accountable person to challenge the constitutional validity of any provision of the Act in proceedings arising under the Act before the authorities constituted under the Act. It was not the case of the accountable person that the case did not fall under Section 34(1)(c). Therefore, question No. 2 is answered against the accountable person and in favour of the revenue.

5. Questions are answered accordingly. No costs.


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