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Gokal Singh and Kirpal Singh Vs. the State of Punjab - Court Judgment

LegalCrystal Citation
SubjectSales Tax
CourtPunjab and Haryana High Court
Decided On
Case NumberGeneral Sales Tax Reference No. 19 of 1976
Judge
Reported in[1982]51STC402(P& H)
AppellantGokal Singh and Kirpal Singh
RespondentThe State of Punjab
Appellant Advocate H.K.L. Bajaj, Adv.
Respondent Advocate A.S. Sandhu, Additional Adv.-General
Cases ReferredRamavatar Budhaiprasad v. Assistant Sales Tax Officer
Excerpt:
.....by way of limitation is in the nature of a restraint on the remedy provided under the act. so viewed two inferences are clear viz., (1) sections 80 and 89 of the act read with rule 85 of the rules make it obligatory for the authorities making the order to communicate it to the applicant concerned and (2) the period of limitation for any appeal against the order is reckonable from the date of such communication of the reasons would imply communication of a copy of the written order itself, a party who knows about the making of an order cannot ignore the same and allow grass to grow under its feet and do nothing except waiting for a formal communication of the order or to choose a tenuous plea that even though he knew about the order, he was waiting for its formal communication to..........concessional rate of tax to certain goods including 'mash' and 'dried peas' was not applicable to 'rajmash' (raj mohan) and 'lobia' ?2. the assessee is a registered dealer under the act and carries on business of sales of pulses at patiala. during the assessment year the assessing authority added rs. 12,000 to the taxable turnover relating to the sales of 'lobia' and 'rajmash'. the assessee claimed that the sales of 'lobia' and 'rajmash' were liable to sales tax at the rate of 3 per cent in view of entry no. 21, which reads as under :21. the rate of tax on wheat and its flour including maida and suji, maize and its flour, bajra and its flour, barley and its flour, rice and paddy, gram, dal gram, gram flour, churi (wand), mung and dal mung, mash and dal mash, moth and dal moth, masoor and.....
Judgment:

S.P. Goyal, J.

1. The following question has been referred to this Court under Section 22(1) of the Punjab General Sales Tax Act, 1948 (hereinafter called the Act), by the Tribunal:

Whether, on the facts and in the circumstances of the case, the Tribunal was right in law in holding that item No. 21 of the Punjab Government Notification No.S.O. 26/PA/46/48/S. 5/72 dated 10th August, 1972, granting concessional rate of tax to certain goods including 'mash' and 'dried peas' was not applicable to 'rajmash' (raj mohan) and 'lobia' ?

2. The assessee is a registered dealer under the Act and carries on business of sales of pulses at Patiala. During the assessment year the Assessing Authority added Rs. 12,000 to the taxable turnover relating to the sales of 'lobia' and 'rajmash'. The assessee claimed that the sales of 'lobia' and 'rajmash' were liable to sales tax at the rate of 3 per cent in view of entry No. 21, which reads as under :

21. The rate of tax on wheat and its flour including maida and suji, maize and its flour, bajra and its flour, barley and its flour, rice and paddy, gram, dal gram, gram flour, churi (wand), mung and dal mung, mash and dal mash, moth and dal moth, masoor and dal masoor, malka masoor and dal malka masoor, arhar and dal arhar, jowar and its flour, gowara and its flour, fried pea, its dal and flour, shall be three paise a rupee.

3. The Assessing Authority, however, took the view that Iobia' and 'rajmash' were not covered by any of the items mentioned in the said entry and overruled the contention of the assessee. Having failed up to the Tribunal, the assessee got the above-mentioned question referred to this Court.

4. According to the learned counsel for the assessee 'lobia' and 'rajmash' being a variety of the pulses would be covered by the term 'mash' as used in the said entry, . We however do not find any merit in this contention because the words used in taxing statutes are to be understood as in common parlance and not in the technical sense nor from the botanical point of view. As far back as the year 1961, the Supreme Court in Ramavatar Budhaiprasad v. Assistant Sales Tax Officer, Akola [1961] 12 STC 286 (SC), while holding that betel leaves cannot be considered as vegetable, observed as under :

Reliance was placed on the dictionary meaning of the word 'vegetable' as given in Shorter Oxford Dictionary where the word is defined as 'of or pertaining to, comprised or consisting of, or derived, or obtained from plants or their parts'. But this word must be construed not in any technical sense nor from the botanical point of view but as understood in common parlance. It has not been defined in the Act and being a word of every day use it must be construed in its popular sense meaning that sense which people conversant with the subject-matter with which the statute is dealing would attribute to it.

5. If the terms in-entry No. 21 are interpreted in accordance with the dictum laid down by the Supreme Court, 'mash' could never be said to cover 'lobia' and 'rajmash'. Moreover the fact that several varieties of pulses are specifically mentioned in the item would also show that the intention was to exclude the other varieties of pulses which are not specifically mentioned. As no attempt was made before us by the learned counsel for the assessee to argue that 'lobia' and 'rajmash' would be covered by the term 'dried peas', we find no reason to differ with the view of the Tribunal and the question is accordingly answered in the affirmative. No costs.


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