S. Obul Reddi, C.J.
1. These two revision cases, one against the assessment proceedings and the other against the penalty proceedings, arise out of two separate orders of the Sales Tax Appellate Tribunal, in T.A. Nos. 378/76 and 379/76.
2. Mr. Dasaratharama Reddi, the learned counsel appearing for the petitioner, a firm called M/s. Produce Commercial Syndicate, Vizianagaram, contended that the enhancement of turnover made by the Assistant Commissioner of Commercial Taxes in exercise of his powers under Section 19(3)(a) of the A.P.G.S.T. Act is illegal as it was made beyond the period of limitation prescribed in Section 14(4-A) of the same Act.
3. The facts necessary for determination of the question are these : The petitioner submitted its return for the assessment year 1969-70 on 7th July, 1970, showing a turnover of Rs. 30,500. The Deputy Commercial Tax Officer by his order dated 31st March, 1971, assessed the petitioner on a turnover of Rs. 1,44,173.50. That assessment order was carried in appeal by the petitioner to the Assistant Commissioner of Commercial Taxes. The Assistant Commissioner found that the addition made by the assessing officer was not in accordance with the turnover shown in the book and having regard to the turnover shown in the book which was not produced earlier before the assessing authority, he enhanced the turnover from Rs. 1,44,173.50 to Rs. 1,87,724.20 by adding Rs. 43,550.70. That led the petitioner to prefer an appeal before the Sales Tax Appellate Tribunal, Hyderabad. The Sales Tax Appellate Tribunal dismissed the appeal on the ground that no period of limitation is prescribed for disposal of an appeal and, therefore, the Assistant Commissioner was perfectly within the bounds of law when he enhanced the turnover.
4. Now the question before us is whether it is a case of escaped turnover. If it is a case of escaped turnover, Section 14(4-A) prescribed a period of limitation. The petitioner admittedly did not produce the book which showed the correct turnover. The Deputy Commercial Tax Officer at the time of the assessment proceedings called upon the petitioner to produce the book which contained the turnover as he has earlier inspected that book and initialled it. The petitioner did not choose to produce the book which disclosed the turnover before the Deputy Commercial Tax Officer. The Deputy Commercial Tax Officer without reference to the turnover noted in that particular book rejected the return of the petitioner disclosing a turnSectionover of Rs. 30,500 and estimated the turnover at Rs. 1,44,173.50 and levied tax on that turnover.
5. We can understand Mr. Sastry's argument of the power of the appellate authority to correct mistakes committed by the assessing authority provided it is a case where the assessing authority had failed to correctly subtract or add figures. This is not a case of such mistake on the part of the assessing authority for, Mr. Sastry, the learned counsel for the department, to say that all that was done by the appellate authority was to correct an error in calculation which had crept in and as such the period of limitation prescribed under Section 14(4-A) is not applicable. This is a case where the Deputy Commercial Tax Officer (assessing authority) had estimated the turnover of the petitioner rejecting the turnover declared by the petitioner in its return. That estimate did not agree with the turnover disclosed in the book which the petitioner failed to produce before the Deputy Commercial Tax Officer. Therefore, it is an obvious case of escaped turnover. If it is an escaped turnover, the limitation prescribed in Section 14(4-A) applies. Clause (a) of Section 14(4-A) prescribes a period of six years from the expiry of the year to which the assessment relates. The year of assessment, as already shown, is 1969-70 and the order of the Assistant Commissioner enhancing the turnover on the ground that the addition he made had escaped assessment of tax was dated 27th April, 1976. The order of the Assistant Commissioner is, therefore, beyond the period of six years prescribed in respect of the escaped turnover. We, therefore, hold that the lower authorities were in error in holding that the question of limitation did not arise in making the addition by the Assistant Commissioner of Commercial Taxes. Therefore, the addition of Rs. 43,550.70 or whatever be the correct amount made by the Assistant Commissioner is set aside. The result would be the assessment order of the Deputy Commercial Tax Officer is confirmed.
6. In view of the fact that we have set aside the addition made by the Assistant Commissioner of Commercial Taxes, which was confirmed by the Tribunal, we set aside the impugned order levying penalty on the petitioner and direct the Tribunal to reduce the same proportionately.
7. In the result, T.R.C. No. 61 of 1977 is allowed and T.R.C. No. 62 of 1977 is remitted back for disposal to the Sales Tax Appellate Tribunal. No costs. Advocate's fee Rs. 200 in each.