C. S. P. Singh, J. - The Additional Judge, (Revisions) Sales Tax, Kanpur Range, Kanpur has under section 11(1) of the U.P. Sales Tax Act, referred the following two questions for our opinion.
1. Whether on the facts and in the circumstances of the case, there being no separate category of VIM in any of the Notifications the article known and published as VIM could fall under the category of the notification 'Washing soaps and other materials used for washing purposes,' being ejusdem generis to 'Washing soaps' ?
2. If the answer to the above question is in the affirmative whether the Assessing Authority was justified in levying tax on VIM, it having been purchased from the manufacturers in U.P. ?
2. The assessee is a dealer in Vegetable ghee, blades, VIM etc. and the reference relates to the assessment years 1966-67. One of the materials sold by the assessee was VIM. This had been locally purchased from manufacturers in U.P. viz. M/s. Hindustan Lever Ltd., Ghaziabad. Washing soaps and other materials used for washing purposes were subject to a single pont tax, i.e. at the point of the first sale by the manufacturer. The assessee having purchased the goods from the manufacturer M/s. Hindustan Lever Ltd, Ghaziabad claimed exemption from tax on the sales affected by it. The Sales Tax Officer disallowed the claim on the turnover of Rs. 46,320.02 which represented the sale proceeds of VIM. He found that the VIM was a product of soda ash, soaps and abrasives and was used for washing floors, basins, plates, cups etc. and, therefore, did not fall under the category of 'washing soaps and other materials for washing purposes.' In this view of the matter the Sales Tax Officer treated VIM as an unclassified and unspecified or an unnotified item and held it to be taxable at multiple point at the general rate under section 3(a) 2 per cent. The Assistant Commissioner Judicial Sales Tax held that the main purpose of VIM was to cleanse articles, and to make them brighter, and as there was a difference between washing and cleansing, VIM could not be taken to be washing material. On revision, the Judge Revisions took the view that although some water is used while applying Vim but if could not be said that it was a washing material. He found that Vim was applied by keeping it on a cloth and sprinkling a little water on it, and thereafter the utensil or other article which is to be cleaned is rubbed by the same cloth. In this view of the matter he dismissed the revision.
3. Item No. 32 of the relevant notification reads 'Washing soaps and other materials used for washing purposes.' Under the first part of the notification only washing soaps enjoy the concessional rate of tax but the second part is vary wide and all other materials which are used for washing purposes will come within its purview. In every act of washing there is cleansing process, which is effected by diverse methods including the use of a washing agent. The Assistant Commissioner Judicial found that in the directions given for the use of Vim, the powder has to be sprinkled on some damp cloth or moistened surface and then the surface has to be rubbed rinsed and dried. From these findings it is obvious that water is required for the application of the Vim at the initial stage, and also when the surface on which it is applied is rinsed. We cannot contemplate a case in these areas where rising can be done by use of any other liquid then the use of water. The process of rising has to be adopted in order to remove the traces of Vim on the surface that is cleaned. This being so we are unable to understand how it will fall with in the category of the articles contemplated in the second part of the notification in question.
4. Counsel for the Department tried to urge that the other material for washing purposes contemplated by the notification are only such materials as are akin to washing soaps. We are unable to accept this arguments as the notification in question is very widely worded. Reliance on the Hindi version of the notification in which the words are 'Kapada Dhone ka sabun tatha Dhone ka Annya Saman' also does not help the Department as the words' Dhone ka Annya Saman' will take within its embrace any other material which is used for washing purposes.
5. We accordingly answer the first question by saying that Vim falls within the category of the Notification 'other material used for washing purposes.' The answer to the second question is incidental to the first as once Vim falls within the category of 'other washing material' and as it was purchased from manufacturers in U.P. it was subject to a single point tax and not to multiple point as imposed by the Sales Tax Officer. We, therefore, answer the second question in the negative.
6. The assessee dealer is entitled to its costs which we assess at Rs. 100/-.