Skip to content


Mini Fertilizer (Pvt.) Ltd. Vs. Commissioner of Sales Tax - Court Judgment

LegalCrystal Citation
SubjectSales Tax
CourtAllahabad High Court
Decided On
Case NumberSales Tax Appeal No. 1446 of 1977
Judge
Reported in[1979]44STC494(All)
AppellantMini Fertilizer (Pvt.) Ltd.
RespondentCommissioner of Sales Tax
Appellant AdvocateBharatji Agarwal, Adv.
Respondent AdvocateStanding Counsel
Excerpt:
- .....are manufactured is not disputed in the present appeal. in order to manufacture sulphur rolls, rock sulphur is melted in a tank. the melted sulphur is then pumped into a refining pot where the sulphur evaporates in the absence of air. the sulphur vapours are passed into condensing vessels from which they come out in the form of molten sulphur. this molten sulphur is then poured into wooden frames, where it is allowed to cool. on cooling the sulphur obtains the roll form.3. it cannot be disputed that rock sulphur is a natural mineral, for it is found to exist either in a free condition in volcanic regions or in the form of sulphide and sulphates. the question is as to whether sulphur rolls which have been obtained by the process detailed earlier would continue to fall within the.....
Judgment:

C.S.P. Singh, J.

1. This is an appeal by the assessee under Section 35 of the Act. The assessee purchases sulphur rocks from Mines and Minerals Trading Corporation. He then manufactures sulphur rolls from it. The assessee solicited the opinion of the Commissioner of Sales Tax as to whether sulphur rolls sold by it were minerals covered by Notification No. ST-H-4949/X--10(2)-74 dated 30th May, 1975, or an unclassified item. The relevant part of the notification runs thus:

1. All kinds of minerals, ores, metals and alloys except those included in any other notification issued under the Act.

2. The process of manufacturing sulphur rolls was not disclosed by the assessee, but the Commissioner of Sales Tax gathered it from a connected appeal and the method by which sulphur rolls are manufactured is not disputed in the present appeal. In order to manufacture sulphur rolls, rock sulphur is melted in a tank. The melted sulphur is then pumped into a refining pot where the sulphur evaporates in the absence of air. The sulphur vapours are passed into condensing vessels from which they come out in the form of molten sulphur. This molten sulphur is then poured into wooden frames, where it is allowed to cool. On cooling the sulphur obtains the roll form.

3. It cannot be disputed that rock sulphur is a natural mineral, for it is found to exist either in a free condition in volcanic regions or in the form of sulphide and sulphates. The question is as to whether sulphur rolls which have been obtained by the process detailed earlier would continue to fall within the description of 'all kinds of minerals'. Now, the mere casting of the sulphur rocks into rolls will not alter its character for nothing else is done except melting rock sulphur into a molten substance and then cooling it in wooden frames. In Hindustan Aluminium Corporation Ltd. v. State of Uttar Pradesh 1977 U.P.T.C. 81, a question arose as to whether aluminium alloys, ingots, wire bars and billets, which were obtained by the casting process, i.e., similar to the one used in the present, would fall within the category of metals and alloys. It was held that they would continue to fall within the category of metals and alloys as they did not change their character on account of the fact that they were put into a particular shape by cooling them in casts. Thus, the question that really falls for determination is as to whether a new commercial commodity came into existence in the form of sulphur rolls by purification of rock sulphur by the assessee. In the case of State of Tamil Nadu v. Pyare Lal Malhotra A.I.R. 1976 S.C. 800, it was held that, although under the law of sales tax, the taxable event is the sale and not the manufacture of goods, yet if it becomes necessary to decide as to whether a new commercial commodity has come into existence so as to attract tax again, it is necessary to consider as to whether the manufacturing process has altered the identity of the earlier commercial commodity. In the present case, one may proceed on the basis that sulphur rolls are obtained from rock sulphur by a manufacturing process. The question however still remains as to whether there has been an alteration in the identity of the commercial commodity, viz., sulphur. In my view, there is no such drastic alteration as to take out sulphur rolls from the category of 'all kinds of minerals' as mentioned in the notification. All that has happened is that rock sulphur has been purified and put in the shape of sulphur rolls. There has been no essential change in the quality and the character of sulphur as found in the sulphur rocks and in sulphur rolls. Sulphur rolls are really nothing else but a purified form of rock sulphur. In such a situation, the decision of the Supreme Court in the case of Tungabhadra Industries Ltd., Kurnool v. Commercial Tax Officer [1960] 11 S.T.C. 827 (S.C.) is applicable. In that case, the question was whether hydrogenated groundnut oil was different from groundnut oil. It was held that inasmuch as the process of hydrogenation did not alter the essential character of groundnut oil, both the commodities were the same.

4. In view of these considerations, it must be held that sulphur rolls sold by the assessee are taxable as minerals as mentioned in Notification No. ST-II-4949/X--10(2)-74 dated 30th May, 1975, and not as an unclassified item.

5. The appeal is accordingly allowed with Rs. 200 as costs to the assessee.


Save Judgments// Add Notes // Store Search Result sets // Organizer Client Files //