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B.K. Seshu Vs. Income-tax Officer - Court Judgment

LegalCrystal Citation
CourtIncome Tax Appellate Tribunal ITAT Hyderabad
Decided On
Reported in(1984)10ITD365(Hyd.)
AppellantB.K. Seshu
Respondentincome-tax Officer
1. this is an appeal by the assessee for the assessment year 1981-82 against the order of the aac, dated 24-6-1983. the subject-matter of the appeal is the confirmed disallowance of rs. 31,400 incurred by the assessee, an advocate, for his foreign tour to participate in certain international legal conferences.2. the prime question which falls for determination is whether the foreign tour expenditure was incurred by the assessee wholly and exclusively for carrying on his profession and was, hence, an admissible deduction.3. the assessee is said to be practising from 1951 in labour courts as well as in the high courts and handles matters relating to company law.he has also been retained by certain banks as well as by certain companies.4. he was sponsored by the bar council of india as a.....
1. This is an appeal by the assessee for the assessment year 1981-82 against the order of the AAC, dated 24-6-1983. The subject-matter of the appeal is the confirmed disallowance of Rs. 31,400 incurred by the assessee, an advocate, for his foreign tour to participate in certain international legal conferences.

2. The prime question which falls for determination is whether the foreign tour expenditure was incurred by the assessee wholly and exclusively for carrying on his profession and was, hence, an admissible deduction.

3. The assessee is said to be practising from 1951 in Labour Courts as well as in the High Courts and handles matters relating to company law.

He has also been retained by certain banks as well as by certain companies.

4. He was sponsored by the Bar Council of India as a member of its delegation to the 59th Conference of the International Law Association held at Belgrade, Yugoslavia from 17-8-1980 to 23-8-1980 and also for the 18th Conference of the International Bar Association held at Berlin from 24-8-1980 to 30-8-1980. He further participated in the study tour, sponsored by the Bar Council of India and visited the Bar Associations at Copenhagen, French Bar Associations and Law Association at London.

While the assessee was in London, visits were made to lower Courts, the House of Lords and to the Privy Council.

5. The assessee had deposited Rs. 16,400 and Rs. 15,000 aggregating to Rs. 31,400 in the accounting period with the Bar Council of India towards defraying the expenses for his foreign tour. There was a further final payment of Rs. 1,312 on 20-3-1982, Shri Satyanarayana Peeti, who appeared for the assessee, conceded that an amount of Rs. 2,975 (350 dollars at Rs, 8.50 per dollar) was incurred as personal expenses and to that extent there may be a disallowance and the rest of Rs. 28,425 should be allowed in this assessment year as expenditure laid out fully and completely for the purpose of his profession.

6. The assessee claimed before the ITO that the foreign tour undertaken by him at the instance of Bar Council of India was highly beneficial and educative from the point of view of his profession. In his note filed along with his return he elucidated that he had visited the lawyers' offices in the host countries and came to know how modern and sophisticated they are in their professional approach.

7. The ITO felt that the assessee had not amplified what professional benefits accrued to him by his foreign trip in carrying on of his day-to-day professional activities in India which generates his taxable income. According to the ITO, the note appended to the return by the assessee recounted only the places of interest he visited, the conferences he attended but had not elaborated upon the educative value of the foreign tours which accrued to him as a practising lawyer. By a letter of 24-11-1982 he sought for the amplification of the gain to the assessee from the conferences from the professional angle and not being satisfied by the reply of 6-1-1983, he again sought elucidation by his letter of 13-1-1983 to which the assessee replied on 23-2-1983 that the gain was in the field of acquaintance with new legal trends and the assessee had kept himself of abreast of developments in law.

8. The ITO concluded that the assessee had the opportunity of knowing only about the legal trends in the East European countries through the conferences he had attended and he opined that those legal trends of East European countries may not be of much help to a practising lawyer in India, because the judicial systems followed and practised in East European countries radically differed from the system adopted in India.

It was the belief of the ITO that we are only following the Westminster system in India and the legal system of East European countries has nothing, therefore, to do with the Indian system of law and justice.

Accordingly, he concluded that the expenditure incurred by the assessee on the foreign tour did not qualify itself to be an admissible expenditure under Section 37(1) of the Income-tax Act, 1961 ('the Act'), firstly, on the ground that the expenditure is not wholly and exclusively spent for carrying on of the assessee's profession and secondly, because expenditure incurred is purely in the nature of personal expenditure of the assessee. Hence, the claim for deduction of Rs. 31,400 was rejected.

9. The assessee having been aggrieved by the assessment preferred appeal before the AAC. It was contended before him that the tour was highly beneficial and educative as the assessee was able to have the views of lawyers of the other countries about the profession in such countries and also could keep himself aware of the developments in the legal fields in other countries. For this purpose, it was stated that the tour was undertaken by him to gain professional experience. The letters of the assessee addressed to the ITO on 6-1-1983, 13-1-1983 and 22-1-1983 explaining as to how he was benefited by the conferences as well as visits to France and UK were brought to the notice of the AAC.So also, the booklets published containing the programme of the conferences, which the assessee attended as a sponsored delegate of the Bar Council of India, were also furnished for the perusal of the AAC. A submission was made that it was not necessary that such tour should have something to do immediately with the actual work performed by the assessee in the course of his professional activities in India, but the matter must be viewed in a broader perspective. The expenditure would be an allowable expenditure, according to the assessee, even if the exposure at the conferences really helped the assessee to further enlighten him in his professional work. On the other hand, the stand of the ITO was that though he could not deny the educative value of such tour to the assessee, the said education which he had received by attending the international law conferences had nothing to do with his professional practice in India for the reasons elaborated in the assessment.

10. Before the AAC the assessee's counsel relied upon the decision of the Andhra Pradesh High Court in CIT v. S. Krishna Rao [1970] 76 ITR 664. The AAC held that the cited decision is distinguishable. In the cited decision the knowledge gathered by the assessee, he held, was directly related to his business activity in India and the technical knowledge which he gathered could have been directly utilised in furtherance and improvement of his business activities in India.

However, in the case on hand before him, it was not so. According to the AAC, the educative value of the foreign tour undertaken by the assessee cannot be denied. However, it was also to be seen whether the education earned through such tour is having anything to do with the improvement and furtherance of professional activity of the assessee.

Ultimately, he held that he was convinced after studying the course material and the conference programmes that whatever may be the educative value of such conferences, it had nothing to do with the professional activity of the assessee in India. He observed that the subjects considered in such conferences have almost nothing to do with the area of practice of the assessee in India and dealt with legal systems prevailing in those countries. However, the AAC conceded this much : I do not mean by this to say that the education which he had received must directly result in his enhancement of his professional earning in India or increase of his clientele in India. It is enough if the education he received has some direct or indirect connection with his actual professional activity at present or in future.

11. Aggrieved by the order of the AAC dated 24-6-1983 the assessee brought the matter in second appeal before this Tribunal and, thus, the matter stands for our consideration.

12. We have heard Shri Satyanarayana Peeti, the learned counsel for the assessee and Shri N. Santhanam, the learned departmental representative. We cannot but help expressing our gratitude to both of them for their elaborate and elucidating arguments on every conceivable point which may arise for decision and the thorough research which they have made over the subject.

13. The principal question which is to be decided in this case is whether the expenditure on foreign tour is laid out or expended wholly and exclusively for the purposes of profession carried on by the assessee in India. In CIT v. Malayalam Plantations Ltd. [1964] 53 ITR 140 (SC), Subba Rao, J. (as he then was) speaking for the Supreme Court said : ...Its range is wide : it may take in not only the day to day running of a business but also the rationalisation of its administration and modernisation of its machinery ; it may include measures for the preservation of the business and for the protection of its assets and property from expropriation, coercive process or assertion of hostile title ; it may also comprehend payment of statutory dues and taxes imposed as a precondition to commence or for carrying on of a business ; it may comprehend many other acts incidental to the carrying on of business. However wide the meaning of the expression may be, its limits are implicit in it. The purpose shall be for the purpose of the business, that is to say, the expenditure incurred shall be for the carrying on of the business and the assessee shall incur it in his capacity as a person carrying on the business....(p. 150) The ambit of the term 'for the purpose of business' again was considered by the Supreme Court in Travancore Titanium Product Ltd. v.CIT [1966] 60 ITR 277 where it was held that the expenditure must be incidental to the business and must be necessitated and justified by commercial expediency. It must be directly and intimately connected with the business and must be laid out by the taxpayer in his character as a trader. To be a permissible deduction, there must be a direct and intimate connection between the expenditure and business, that is, between the expenditure and the character of the assessee as a trader.

In Indian Aluminium Co. Ltd. v. CIT [1972] 84 ITR 735 their Lordships of the Supreme Court held that the principle laid down in the Travancore Titanium Product Ltd.'s case (supra) needs to be clarified by stating that even if the expenditure is laid out by the assessee as owner-cwm-trader and the expenditure is really incidental to the carrying on of his business, it must be treated to have been laid out by him as a trader and as incidental to his business. The ratio of the aforesaid judgments show the term 'for the purpose of profession' would be wider than 'for the purpose of earning income from profession'.

Applying the ratio of the above decisions to the facts of the case, we have to hold that incurring expenditure on foreign tour need not at once yield results and increase the income of the assessee or increase the number of clientele coming to him.

14. We are of the opinion that the finding of the AAC that whatever may be the educative value of the conferences they have nothing to do with the professional activities of the assessee in India is not correct on facts available on record.

In order to understand how the discussions in the conferences benefited the assessee in his profession, one has to know what sort of grounding and equipment is necessary to further the professional efficiency of the assessee in the fields in which he is mainly engaged. As stated already he was an adviser to several companies and banks, attends labour courts and the High Court. In his work, thus, the assessee is concerned very much with the Company Law, the Indian Contract Act, 1872, the Transfer of Property Act, 1882, the Negotiable Instruments Act, other civil laws as well as labour laws. The 59th conference of the International Law Association was held from 17-8-1980 to 23-8-1980 at Belgrade. A copy of the professional programme of the said conference as provided to us gives a list of subjects which were discussed at the conference. They include International Monetary Law, Conservation of Environment, Collisions at Sea, International Commercial Arbitration, etc. The organising committee of the conference in the foreword states as follows : The 59th ILA Conference in Belgrade will deal with the legal aspects of a new International Economic Order as well as numerous current issues in International Law, with reports from all the ILA international committees. On their part, Yugoslav lawyers will do their best, through the work of their national committees and traditional Yugoslav hospitality, to ensure the success of the conference to the satisfaction of every participant.

Therefore, from the above it would be seen that the conference is of international character and the ITO is quite wrong in taking it to be a conference where only the exposure to the Yugoslav system of law would be discussed. Every subject discussed in the said conference was of concern to lawyers of all participating countries. For instance, International Monetary Law is a subject in which every country having currency system is interested. So also, with the increase of cases of hijacking in the air, the subject of international terrorism assumes great importance and with which India is also very much concerned. So also, Indian parties are entering into collaboration agreements with countries east and west in the setting up of industries. With rapid industrialisation it is but common that disputes would arise regarding the interpretation of the collaboration agreements and in almost all collaboration agreements arbitration clauses would be found and, therefore, it is necessary that as a lawyer in India one should know the fundamental principles governing International Commercial Arbitration.

15. The Indian Law Institute in its book An Introduction to the Study of Comparative Law in Chapter II at page 8 found that knowledge of comparative law has become one of the indispensable tools for a practicing attorney, a wise judge and a vigilant legislator. Giving reasons for such an observation the following is stated as to why a practising attorney should necessarily know the comparative law : As respects practising attorneys the practical utility of comparative law manifested at least in four different ways, said Stevenson. Indianising Stevenson's illustrations, the most obvious situation, of course, is in an international conflict of laws case in which it has been determined that foreign law is applicable.

Effective examination and cross-examination of expert witnesses presumes at least a minimum acquaintance with the laws and techniques of the foreign country in question. Secondly, a lawyer might be retained by a foreign client who also employed counsel in his own country. In this situation an attempt to communicate with the foreign lawyer would require some knowledge of his legal terminology and concepts as a vital safeguard against misunderstanding. Thirdly, there is the converse situation of an Indian lawyer with local clients who are engaged in international trade or finance where foreign counsel will be retained to handle most legal problems arising abroad. Here it will be necessary for the Indian lawyer to know enough foreign law to discuss the problems intelligently with foreign counsel and to give him appropriate instruction. Finally, in cases of first impression where a similar issue has been decided abroad, reference to foreign law may be helpful to the lawyer in winning his case. (p. 8) The above strengthens our conclusion differing from that of the lower authorities and makes it clear that the impression of the lower authorities that knowledge of comparative law of other countries is quite useless to the assessee and does not help him at all in his practice in India cannot be accepted as correct.

16. The 18th conference of the International Bar Association was held at Berlin, West Germany, from 24-8-1980 to 30-8-1980. It is said that for this conference and that already referred to 40 chief justices, 140 judges, 300 professors of law and 2,600 lawyers from all over the world attended and participated in the deliberations either in committees of the sections or otherwise. The then President of the International Bar Association, Mr. E. Neil Mckelvey, stated in the foreword in the leaflet containing programme of International Bar Association as follows : In planning this meeting we have endeavoured to provide a programme full of interest and value to lawyers worldwide, in whatever field of law they specialise. There are only two main topics-both of which cover areas of major importance to lawyers today-to allow everyone the opportunity of attending the numerous meetings organised by the committees of the sections on business law and general practice.

The list of subjects discussed in several committees constituting sections on 'business law' are given at page 9 of the booklet of the programme of the International Bar Association Conference. The subjects discussed by the committees constituting sections on 'business law' included : As can be seen from the message given by the President of the International Bar Association, every delegate coming to the conference will be given full opportunity of attending the numerous meetings organised by the committees of sections on 'business law' and 'general practice'. The subjects discussed by the committees in the section of 'general practice' are given at page 10. They include real property, general administrative law, corporate law departments, etc. The programme as to what subjects in the section on 'business law' and the section on 'general practice' would be discussed at the conference were given on each day and considerable time was allotted on each day for the discussion on such subjects. It can be easily seen that the very subjects in which the assessee practises day in and day out were also the subjects discussed in those committees, i.e., section on 'business law' and section on 'general practice'. All the world legal luminaries attending the conference could submit their papers, deliver lectures and they could exchange their views with their counterparts belonging to the other countries. It is needless to say that there was ample scope for the assessee to know the current legal trends apart from the general law in the very subjects in which he is practising and also to keep abreast with the latest law on those and other subjects.

17. In the letter which the assessee addressed to the ITO on 22-1-1983 he categorically stated that he gained knowledge of the new legal trends relating to the civil procedure, criminal procedure, labour law, constitutional reforms, corporate company law, professional ethics, modern scientific equipment and technique for a lawyer's office. He further stated that all this made him efficient in his profession and enabled him to handle complicated matters. He further stated the necessity for an advocate to keep abreast of the latest developments in law and he also intimated that the conferences which he had attended played significant role in developing the lawyer's mind and which is reflected in his day to day practice. Before he was sent as a delegate of the Bar Council of India, the Chairman of the Bar Council of India wrote a letter dated 8-7-1980 to the assessee wherein he welcomed him as a member of the delegation of his institute to International Conferences at Belgrade and Berlin and also for the study tour. He stated that the Bar Council of India will keep the assessee informed as to the progress of the arrangements. He was further informed that the Bar Council was able to finalise the arrangements of the meeting of their delegation with Copenhagen Bar Association and French Bar Association. It is also informed that Law Society, England has given an enthusiastic response to welcome the Indian delegation to the UK and at that time the Bar Council was preparing a detailed programme for their delegation to visit the various Courts in the UK. It is the ultimate decision of both the lower authorities that having regard to the programmes of the conferences and the study tours which the delegation of Bar Council of India conducted in France and UK, though they might have secured some educative value for the assessee still they have nothing to do with the professional activity of the assessee in India.

The AAC expressed the opinion that apart from the International matters discussed in those conferences, the other subjects discussed only pertained mostly to legal systems prevailing in those countries which have nothing to do with the legal systems followed and obtained in India. Therefore, ultimately he came to the conclusion that the expenditure incurred on foreign tour had nothing to do with the professional activity of the assessee in the country.

18. In order to correctly appreciate what would aid the professional activity of a practising advocate in India to which learned profession the assessee belongs, we should broadly know what is the grounding and equipment which such advocate is expected to possess. What is meant by proper education of a practising lawyer There may be no judicial pronouncements directly on the point but we have the opinions of eminent judges. The Indian Law Institute in its book An Introduction to the Study of Comparative Law at page 11 held that it has been said that education is what remains after the facts have been forgotten. Lord Bower's jibe that a jurist is a man who knows a little about the law of every country except his own is worthy to be remembered at this juncture.

19. Justice Khanna of the Supreme Court in his book Law, Men of Law and Education writing about the role of lawyers in shaping the society stated that- Law, it has been said does not live in books ; it lives with the profession. Judges dressed with their brief authority may seem to speak more finally, but it is only for the moment. In the end, they take their cues from the bar, for, it is the bar which makes the statutes and fabricates the adjustments which they express. It is also the bar which gives new shape and meaning to the words of a statute and puts flesh and blood in their dry bones. (p. 18) He also stated that used as an instrument of social engineering, law can introduce smoothness in the act of change, prevent upheavals and eliminate jolts in the onward march of society.

20. Justice Krishna Iyer in his book Law, Society and Collective Consciousness visualised the role of the lawyer in the society as a public functionary and his equipment and skill should, according to him, include the following : The lawyer is a public functionary and the demand based on professions for the people and 'the politics of skill' apply to him, too. Mr. Justice Bhagwati and I, in separate committees and together, have spelt out some proposals for lawyer reform. If we assent to the role of the lawyer as the engineer of justice under the law, his horizon must widen, his heart must beat to new vibrations, his interests must overflow into economics, psychology, sociology and all living sciences, his know-how cannot be blinkered by law reports and lexicons. (p. 87) Justice Krishna Iyer pleads that modern advocate in India should have the following grounding : I plead for relevantly radical, socially meaningful, constitutional, foundational courses for the judiciary-not ideologically empty course through colleges and bureaus now in vogue in a few centres.

Once we shape and create aware professionals in the art of court justice, a judicial revolution vaster in sweep, stronger in thrust and more humane in import than what happened in the Warren court may fall to our credit. (p. 88) 21. Justice Hidayatullah, in his book A Judge's Miscellany, which contains his message over All India Radio, Nagpur, about 'Law and Education' at page 313 said that there is a philosophy of law and there is no limits to it. It is as one eminent thinker said 'a bottomless pit'. He advocated the study of law not to earn bread and butter and not to pursue a profession but to be able to teach the law to others just like eminent teachers like Maitland, Holdsworth and Winfield.About lawyers' equipment, education and grounding, he is categorical and states as follows in his book mentioned above : You may not think that for a successful issue, a mere knowledge of law will do. Side by side with the knowledge of law you must acquire a knowledge of history, literature and art. Remember what Scott said in Guy Mannering : A lawyer without history or literature is a mechanic, a mere working mason; if he possesses some knowledge of these, he may venture to call himself an architect.

A liberal education is a necessary concomitant of success in this profession. So do not think that a mere LL.B. degree is all that you need for success. (p. 316) 22. Therefore, in the view of eminent jurists, even the knowledge of sociology, history, psychology, etc., also is very essential for an advocate to be equipped with. We cannot subscribe to the view that knowledge of International law discussed in the international conferences and International Bar Association were not subjects which would not result in necessary and essential education to the assessee as an advocate. The AAC's observations that apart from international problems and other things discussed in the above conferences, the other topics discussed were laws of other countries rather than of India is not acceptable. For instance, in the business law committee or general practice committee formed at the conference of the International Bar Association in Berlin at West Germany, Indian delegates also could read papers on all subjects including, for instance, on Estate and Tax Planning, Criminal Law, Real Property, Labour law, Investment Companies, Funds and Trusts, Commercial Banking, etc. So also, there was ample scope for the Indian delegation to hear from foreign delegates their views on the same subjects presented in the form of papers discussed in the form of workshops, etc. They also got the benefit of exchanging the views personally with each other.

23. Article 217(2) of the Constitution of India prescribes as one qualification for appointment as a Judge of a High Court a minimum of 10 years experience as an advocate of one or more High Courts. Article 124(3)(b) of the Constitution of India prescribes a similar qualification which would enable a suitable advocate to be considered for appointment as a Judge of the Supreme Court of India. It is manifest from the aforesaid provisions that the framers of the Constitution of India considered that a minimum of 10 years experience as an advocate could be a starting point for recruitment from the Bar to higher and even the highest judicial echelons in our country. In order that an advocate may have the requisite experience to be considered for appointment to the Benches of such high judicial bodies, it is necessary that apart from a knowledge of the law as obtaining in India, he should have a knowledge of the laws in various other countries of the world as well as knowledge of various other aspects to which the three eminent jurists have already referred. We may cite just two instances as illustrations of the span of research in legal thinking involved in important issues which come for consideration before the Courts.Bachan Singh v. State of Punjab AIR 1980 SC 898 (majority judgment) and Bachan Singh v. State of Punjab AIR 1982 SC 1325 (minority judgment) on the issue of constitutionality of the death penalty and the second Motilal Padampat Sugar Mills Co. Ltd. v. State of U.P. [1979] 118 ITR 326 (SC) on the doctrine of promissory estoppel.

Hence, for acquiring competence expected by the Constitution of India, by the time an advocate reaches even 10 years standing, attending such seminars would be necessary and certainly would be for the purposes of the profession. One cannot also forget that advocates are the source from which the law officers of Union as well as States are appointed and there cannot be an edifice to be looked up to without a sound and broad base.

24. Coming to the specific cases cited at the bar, in S. Krishna Rao's case (supra), the facts are that the assessee was the owner of a printing press. He attended the International Printers Conferences at Amsterdam representing the A.P. Printers' Association. Besides attending the said conference, he also visited various countries in Europe and utilised his time for studying the various types of printing and machinery. He claimed deduction of an expenditure of Rs. 17,160 as allowable deduction under Section 10(2)(xv) of the Indian Income-tax Act, 1922 ('the 1922 Act') which is analogous to Section 37(1) of the 1961 Act. When the matter came up before the Andhra Pradesh High Court, Justice Gopal Rao Ekbote (as he then was) held that the expenditure incurred by a businessman in keeping himself abreast of the latest techniques of his business is not a capital expenditure. The sum of Rs. 5,160 which the assessee had incurred in the foreign tour was an expenditure incurred wholly and exclusively for his business and held that it is rightfully allowed as a business expenditure. While allowing the said expenditure as allowable business expenditure his Lordship laid down the following tests as criteria : The test to find out whether a particular expenditure is wholly or partly justified or exclusively incurred for the purpose of business is not to see whether it was necessary, nor would it be proper to see whether any other person similarly situated would have thought it reasonable to incur expenditure to that extent. The true test is to find out whether the businessman, when he expended the money, was acting reasonably in the interests of his own business uninfluenced by any irrelevant and extraneous considerations. (p. 665) The ratio of this decision was followed by the Delhi High Court in CIT v. Dr. P.N. Beh [1972] 84 ITR 125. The assessee in that case was a medical practitioner and a dermatologists. He went to Stockholm for a week to attend the International Congress of Dermatology as an official delegate from India. He later visited Russia for a week and the UK for two weeks on the way. The expenditure incurred for his foreign tour was Rs. 5,282. The Tribunal found it as a fact that his tour was study-cum-lecture tour. The High Court ultimately held that the sum of Rs. 5,282 spent by the assessee on the tour was revenue expenditure deductible in computing his professional income.

25. The learned departmental representative very much relied upon the decision of the Mysore High Court in CIT v. Dr. B.V. Raman [1966] 59 ITR 20. In that case the assessee was an astrologer by profession and was also publishing an astrological magazine. He was elected as Second Vice President of Astro-Scientists and was invited to attend the World Congress of Astro-Scientists at New York. During his stay in USA and in other countries through which he travelled, he delivered lectures on astrology and also utilised the opportunity to know the advances made by astrology in those countries. The expenses he had incurred for foreign tour were claimed as deduction under Section 10(2)(xv) of the 1922 Act. The ITO held that the expenditure was not laid out wholly and exclusively for the purposes of the assessee's business. However, the Tribunal allowed the assessee's claim. In that case it was held by the Mysore High Court as follows : ... In deciding whether a given expenditure was incurred exclusively for a business, professional or vocational purpose what has to be considered is the object with which the expense was incurred. In the instant case the expenditure was primarily incurred for the purpose of going over to the USA for attending the conference. The advantage gained for the assessee's business, profession or vocation was secondary and was a remote consequence and it was not for that purpose that the expenditure was incurred. Incidental advantages gained are not taken note of by Section 10(2)(xv) of the Act. (p.

21) 26. The ratio laid down by the Mysore High Court, in our opinion, does not run counter to the principles laid down either by the Andhra Pradesh High Court in S. Krishna Rao's case (supra) or established anything contrary to what is held by the said decision. According to our understanding, the decisions of the Andhra Pradesh High Court and Mysore High Court referred to above are complementary to each other and definitely not contradictory. In Dr. B.V. Raman's case (supra), the primary object of going on foreign tour was taken to be attending conference at New York and, learning the advancement of astrology in countries the assessee visited, was taken to be of secondary benefit which he derived while on tour. Applying the same tests to the facts on hand, we may note that the assessee is not a member of Bar Council of India. He was not obliged to go and attend either the International Law Association or International Bar Association Conferences. He was chosen as a delegate by Indian Bar Association to represent it at those conferences. We consider that the assessee as a practising advocate was actuated only with the desire to equip himself with new trends or advancements in law and thereby widen his horizon while he attended the conferences. Therefore, the primary purpose of the foreign tour of the assessee in this case was only to gain more knowledge and education and to equip himself in finer points of law in the fields in which he is practising with a view to handle his cases more efficiently and successfully than before as well as for fulfilling the true role expected of an advocate.

From the foregoing, we are definitely of the opinion that the lower authorities went wrong in disallowing Rs. 31,400 spent on the foreign tour. As the assessee himself admitted that an amount of Rs. 2,975 is incurred towards his personal expenses during his foreign tour, we hold that the said amount is the only item of disallowable expenditure and the balance, viz., Rs. 31,400 minus Rs. 2,975, should be allowed as legitimate business expenditure under Section 37(1).

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