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income-tax Officer Vs. K.R. Yellagowd and ors. - Court Judgment

LegalCrystal Citation
SubjectDirect Taxation
CourtAndhra Pradesh High Court
Decided On
Case NumberCriminal Appeal No. 1013 of 1982
Judge
Reported in[1991]187ITR255(AP)
ActsIncome Tax Act, 1961 - Sections 276C(1) and 277
Appellantincome-tax Officer
RespondentK.R. Yellagowd and ors.
Appellant AdvocateM. Suryanarayanamurthy, Adv.
Respondent AdvocateY. Ratnakar, Adv.
Excerpt:
direct taxation - firm - sections 276c (1) and 277 of income tax act, 1961 - petition by income tax officer (ito) against non imposition of fine upon firm for certain economic offences - offences committed not compulsorily punishable with both imprisonment and fine - held, firm not liable to be fined. head note: income tax prosecution--offences under s. 276c and 277--a firm was a juridical person and could not be imprisoned--prosecution therefore could not be launched against the firm under the provisions of s. 276 or 277.-goel(d.c.) v. verm (b.l.) (1974) 93 itr 63 (del), kusum products ltd. v. sinha (s.k.), ito (1980) 126 itr 804 (cal) and modi industries ltd. v. goel (b.c.) (1983) 144 itr 496 (all) followed. income tax act 1961 s.276c - .....1961. the learned special judge, however, convicted a-1 and a-3 of both the charges. as a-1 is a firm, no sentence of fine was even inflicted. only a-3 was convicted and sentenced to undergo rigorous imprisonment for one year and also to pay fine of rs. 1,000, in default to undergo simple imprisonment for three months for the offences under sections 276c(1)(i) and 277(i) of the income-tax act. both the sentences were directed to run concurrently. 2. the appeal was admitted by this court only as against a-1, a-2 and a-11. it is reported that a-2 has since died and that the appeal against him abated. a-11 is one of the partners of the firm. the appeal against other partners of the firm having been dismissed by ramachandra raju j. at the time of admission, it deserves to be dismissed.....
Judgment:

Ramanujulu Naidu, J.

1. This petition is preferred by the Income-tax Officer, B-Ward, Khammam, against the order of acquittal of A-1, A-2 and A-4 to A-16 in C.C. No. 49/81 on the file of the Special Judge for Economic Offences, Hyderabad. All the accused were charged with the offences punishable under sections 276C(1)(i) and 277(i) of the Income-tax Act, 1961. The learned special judge, however, convicted A-1 and A-3 of both the charges. As A-1 is a firm, no sentence of fine was even inflicted. Only A-3 was convicted and sentenced to undergo rigorous imprisonment for one year and also to pay fine of Rs. 1,000, in default to undergo simple imprisonment for three months for the offences under sections 276C(1)(i) and 277(i) of the Income-tax Act. Both the sentences were directed to run concurrently.

2. The appeal was admitted by this court only as against A-1, A-2 and A-11. It is reported that A-2 has since died and that the appeal against him abated. A-11 is one of the partners of the firm. The appeal against other partners of the firm having been dismissed by Ramachandra Raju J. at the time of admission, it deserves to be dismissed against A-11 also.

3. Sri Gopalakrishnamacharya, learned counsel appearing for the appellant, submits that the offences of which A-1 is convicted are compulsorily punishable both with imprisonment and fine and that the circumstance that no sentence of imprisonment can be inflicted on a firm does not exonerate the liability of the firm to receive a sentence of fine. In other words, according to learned counsel for the appellant, the firm can compulsorily be visited with a sentence of fine. I find it, however, difficult to accede to his submission. The question is no longer res integra and is covered by the three decisions in D. C. Goel v. B. L. Verma : [1974]93ITR63(Delhi) , Kusum Products LTd. v. S. K. Sinha, ITO : [1980]126ITR804(Cal) and Modi Industries Ltd. v. B. C. Goel : [1983]144ITR496(All) . Following the said decisions, the appeal deserves to be dismissed and is, accordingly, dismissed.


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