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Chandra Shekhar Newal Kishore Vs. Commissioner of Sales Tax, U.P. - Court Judgment

LegalCrystal Citation
SubjectSales Tax
CourtAllahabad High Court
Decided On
Case NumberSales Tax Reference No. 148 of 1957
Judge
Reported in[1963]14STC443(All)
AppellantChandra Shekhar Newal Kishore
RespondentCommissioner of Sales Tax, U.P.
Appellant AdvocateSushil Kumar, Adv.
Respondent AdvocateStanding Counsel
Excerpt:
- - legislature thought that newspapers should also be exempted like water, salt etc......opinion the following questions :-(1) whether in the circumstances of the case, the sales of old newspapers were exempt from tax under section 4(1) (a) of the act ?(2) whether in the circumstances of the case, the sales of old newspapers were exempt from tax under the head of paper and newsprint under notification no. st-199-x/928, dated 1st april, 1948, item no. 10 issued under section 4(1) (a) of the act ?2. we find from the statement of the case that the assessee is a dealer in kirana and medicine. the turnover on which it was assessed to sales tax in the assessment year 1950-51 included proceeds of sale of bundles of old newspapers admittedly sold by it as waste paper. the statement does not show how old these newspapers were. under section 4 of the sales tax act the provisions of.....
Judgment:

M.C. Desai, C.J.

1. At the instance of the assessee the Judge (Revisions), Sales Tax, U.P., has referred to this Court for its opinion the following questions :-

(1) Whether in the circumstances of the case, the sales of old newspapers were exempt from tax under Section 4(1) (a) of the Act ?

(2) Whether in the circumstances of the case, the sales of old newspapers were exempt from tax under the head of paper and newsprint under Notification No. ST-199-X/928, dated 1st April, 1948, item No. 10 issued under Section 4(1) (a) of the Act ?

2. We find from the statement of the case that the assessee is a dealer in Kirana and medicine. The turnover on which it was assessed to sales tax in the assessment year 1950-51 included proceeds of sale of bundles of old newspapers admittedly sold by it as waste paper. The statement does not show how old these newspapers were. Under Section 4 of the Sales Tax Act the provisions of Section 3 are not to apply to the 'sale of water, salt, foodgrains, gur, electrical energy for industrial purposes, books, magazines, newspapers and motor spirit' and any other goods which the Provincial Government may exempt from time to time. In exercise of this power the State Government issued a Notification No. 119/X-928-1948 dated 7th June, 1948, exempting among other articles 'paper and newsprint'. The assessee claimed exemption in respect of the turnover on the sale of old newspapers under Section 4 and did not rely upon the notification at all. The exemption was refused by the Sales Tax Officer, the Judge (Appeals) and the Judge (Revisions). The view that they took was that what was sold was not 'newspaper' but 'waste paper'. Then in an application under Section 11(1) the assessee for the first time claimed exemption also under the notification. That explains why question No. (2) has been referred by the Judge (Revisions). His jurisdiction was to refer to this Court only questions of law arising out of the order passed by him under Section 10 and the question whether the assessee was entitled to exemption under the notification or not did not arise out of the order passed by him under Section 10 for the simple reason that the assessee had not raised this question at all in revision. Question No. (2), therefore, could not be referred to this Court by the Judge (Revisions) and we refuse to answer it.

3. As regards question No. (1) our answer is that what the assessee sold was not newspaper but waste paper. Reference to Section 4(1) (a) in the question is a mistake ; it should be Section 4 because the provision regarding exemption was contained in Section 4 and it was not divided into Sub-sections at all in 1950-51. The articles might have been newspapers on the dates on which they were printed and published but they ceased to be newspapers later. Newspaper means a paper containing news. The papers sold were newspapers on the dates when they were printed and published because then what was printed in them amounted to news. After a lapse of time what was printed in them ceased to be news and consequently they ceased to be newspapers.

4. An article can change its nature ; there is no provision in the Sales Tax Act suggesting that an article retains its nature regardless of change in circumstances. Therefore, what was a newspaper once can cease to be a newspaper and if it is sold after it has ceased to be a newspaper it is not a sale of a newspaper. As has been pointed out by this Court in Industrial and Commercial Service v. Commissioner of Sales Tax (Miscellaneous Case No. 295 of 1954 decided on 14th December, 1962; since reported at 14 S.T.C. 299), the articles that have been exempted under Section 4 are articles of common and daily necessity and use. Legislature thought that newspapers should also be exempted like water, salt etc., because they are universally required for daily use. Old newspapers which have ceased to be of any interest and are not required to be read at all can hardly be placed in the category of water, salt etc. By including newspapers in Section 4 the Legislature did not contemplate newspapers which have ceased to be of any use as newspapers by lapse of time. Therefore, what was sold by the assessee was waste paper though it might have been once newspaper and waste paper is not exempted under Section 4. The answer to question No. (1) is, therefore, in the negative.

5. We direct that a copy of this judgment shall be sent under the seal of the Court and the signature of the Registrar to the Judge (Revisions), Sales Tax, and to the Commissioner of Sales Tax, U.P., as required by Section 11(6) of the U.P. Sales Tax Act. We further direct that the Commissioner of Sales Tax will get his costs of this reference, assessed at Rs. 100, from the assessee.


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