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Commissioner of Sales Tax Vs. Ashwini and Company - Court Judgment

LegalCrystal Citation
SubjectSales Tax
CourtAllahabad High Court
Decided On
Case NumberS.T.R. No. 473 of 1970
Judge
Reported in[1973]32STC618(All)
AppellantCommissioner of Sales Tax
RespondentAshwini and Company
Appellant AdvocateStanding Counsel
Respondent AdvocateNone
Excerpt:
- - the madhya pradesh high court after referring to the meaning of the word 'sections' as given in various dictionaries held that :the only rational meaning that can be given to the entry 'rolled steel sections' is to say that it refers to certain well designed parts which can be used for structural construction and on this view came to the conclusion that iron hoops, which were only thin scraps of steel used for tying big bundles of bales of cotton or other material to keep the bundles in shape do not fall within that category......question for our opinion:whether, on the facts and circumstances of the instant case, the iron hoops are covered by the term 'iron and steel' as denned in section 14(iv) of the central sales tax act ?2. the assessee dealt in iron bailing hoops and jute goods. in the assessment year 1964-65, the assessee's contention in respect of the rate of tax to be imposed on bailing hoops was that bailing hoops are declared commodities under section 14 of the central sales tax act and, as such, were liable to tax at the rate of 2 per cent and not at the rate of 10 per cent. this contention was negatived by the sales tax officer. the .assessee thereafter preferred an appeal before the assistant commissioner (j.) i, sales tax, kanpur range, kanpur. the assistant commissioner following a.....
Judgment:

C.S.P. Singh, J.

1. This is a reference Under Section 11 of the U.P. Sales Tax Act at the instance of the Commissioner of Sales Tax, U.P. The Judge (Revisions), Sales Tax, U.P., has referred the following question for our opinion:

Whether, on the facts and circumstances of the instant case, the iron hoops are covered by the term 'iron and steel' as denned in Section 14(iv) of the Central Sales Tax Act ?

2. The assessee dealt in iron bailing hoops and jute goods. In the assessment year 1964-65, the assessee's contention in respect of the rate of tax to be imposed on bailing hoops was that bailing hoops are declared commodities Under Section 14 of the Central Sales Tax Act and, as such, were liable to tax at the rate of 2 per cent and not at the rate of 10 per cent. This contention was negatived by the Sales Tax Officer. The .assessee thereafter preferred an appeal before the Assistant Commissioner (J.) I, Sales Tax, Kanpur Range, Kanpur. The Assistant Commissioner following a decision of the Gujarat High Court in the case of Vaiswaner Trading Co. v. State of Gujarat [1964] 15 S.T.C 586, held that hoops were declared goods Under Section 14(iv) of the Central Sales Tax Act and were liable to tax at the rate of 2 per cent only. The revising authority dismissed the revision and upheld the order of the Assistant Commissioner (J.) I, Sales Tax. Thereafter, the Commissioner applied for and has obtained a reference of the question referred to above.

3. The question as to whether bailing hoops are declared goods Under Section 14(iv) of the Central Sales Tax Act has been considered by the Gujarat High Court in the case already referred to and by the Madhya Pradesh High Court in the case of Commissioner of Sales Tax, Madhya Pradesh v. Hirji Nainsee & Co., Ujjain [1972] 29 S.T.G. 365. The Gujarat High Court has held rivetted bailing hoops to be pieces of rolled steel sections, while the Madhya Pradesh High Court has held that they are not included in the definition of iron and steel as given in Clause (iv) of Section 14 of the Central Sales Tax Act, 1956. The controversy in the present reference resolves itself with reference to Section 14(iv) of the Central Sales Tax Act. It will be convenient to quote that section. Section 14(iv) reads as under:-

(iv) iron and steel, that is to say,-

(a) pig iron and iron scrap ;

(b) iron plates sold in the same form in which they are directly produced by the rolling mill;

(c) steel scrap, steel ingots, steel billets, steel bars and rods; (d) (i) steel plates,(ii) steel sheets, sold in the same form in(iii) steel bars and tin bars, which they are directly pro(iv) rolled steel sections, duced by the rolling mill.(v) tool alloy steel;

4. This Sub-section gives the various categories of iron and steel which can claim to be taxed at a lower rate of tax. Counsel for the department has contended that iron hoops can possibly come only under the description of rolled steel section which is one of the items included in Section 14(iv) of the Central Sales Tax Act and has urged that inasmuch as these hoops are not obtained by cutting up rolled steel sections they would not come within this category. In the Gujarat decision on which reliance was placed by the Assistant Commissioner and by the revising authority, the question as to whether bailing hoops were rolled steel sections or not was not in controversy because both the parties in that case agreed that they were such. Thus, that case does not afford any direct assistance for deciding the question referred. The Madhya Pradesh High Court after referring to the meaning of the word 'sections' as given in various dictionaries held that :

The only rational meaning that can be given to the entry 'rolled steel sections' is to say that it refers to certain well designed parts which can be used for structural construction

and on this view came to the conclusion that iron hoops, which were only thin scraps of steel used for tying big bundles of bales of cotton or other material to keep the bundles in shape do not fall within that category. With utmost respect, we are unable to subscribe to the view of the Madhya Pradesh High Court, which restricts the category of rolled steel sections to only such articles as can be used for structural constructions. There is nothing in the language of Section 14(iv)(d)(iv) of the Central Sales Tax Act which warrants such a conclusion. In fact, there is no mention in the section of the purpose for which the various items mentioned therein are to be put. As we read Section 14(iv)(d)(iv), all that is necessary is that the article in question should be rolled steel section and once that is established, the use for which it may be put is wholly immaterial. Now, the question whether iron hoops can fall within the category of rolled steel sections can be answered only in case the process of manufacture of this item is known. Unfortunately it does not appear that in the present case parties led any evidence before the authorities concerned, showing the manner in which these hoops are manufactured. The question referred cannot as such be answered in the absence of relevant material. We are, in the instant case, left with no other option but to return the question unanswered.

5. The question is accordingly returned unanswered. There will, however, be no order as to costs. Counsel's fee is assessed at Rs. 100.


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