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City Oil Mill Vs. the Joint Commercial Tax Officer, Royapuram Division and anr. - Court Judgment

LegalCrystal Citation
SubjectSales Tax
CourtChennai High Court
Decided On
Case NumberWrit Petition No. 2397 of 1969
Judge
Reported in[1970]25STC33(Mad)
AppellantCity Oil Mill
RespondentThe Joint Commercial Tax Officer, Royapuram Division and anr.
Appellant AdvocateV. Balasubramanian, Adv.
Respondent AdvocateK. Venkataswami, First Assistant Government Pleader
DispositionPetition dismissed
Cases ReferredIn Kannappa Mudaliar v. State of Madras
Excerpt:
- - the actual entry in section 14 reads :oil-seeds, that is to say, seeds yielding non-volatile oils used for human consumption, or in industry, or in the manufacture of varnishes, soaps and the like, or in lubrication, and volatile oils used chiefly in medicines, perfumes, cosmetics and the like. we are of the view that the word 'seed' must retain its meaning in the phrase oil-seed and it is an article, which, while being a seed, is capable also of yielding oil that can well be described as oil-seed. 5. on that view, we think the petition should fail and it is dismissed......41, a division bench of this court, to which one of us was a party held that cocoanuts were not oilseeds within the meaning of item 6(a) of the second schedule aforesaid. it was pointed out that in interpreting words of common usage appearing in a taxing statute, the popular meaning, rather than the technical, should be adopted. the bench was of the view that if oil could be extracted only by an elaborate process after breaking the identity of the seed, it could not be a case of oil-seed.4. it seems to us that only oil-seeds which without subjecting to much processing yield non-volatile oils, that would be within the ambit of the entry in section 14. our attention has been invited to the definition of a kernel, which takes in also a seed. but this does not help the petitioner. a.....
Judgment:

K. Veeraswami, C.J.

1. The petition is to quash the assessment order charging sales tax on sales of copra. The point in controversy is as to whether copra can be considered as an oil-seed within the meaning of Section 14 of the Central Sales Tax Act, 1956; if it is, it will be declared goods attracting tax only at the specified single point. The actual entry in Section 14 reads :

Oil-seeds, that is to say, seeds yielding non-volatile oils used for human consumption, or in industry, or in the manufacture of varnishes, soaps and the like, or in lubrication, and volatile oils used chiefly in medicines, perfumes, cosmetics and the like.

2. This language has been reiterated in entry 6 of the Second Schedule to the Madras General Sales Tax Act, 1959.

3. In Kannappa Mudaliar v. State of Madras [1968] 21 S.T.C. 41, a Division Bench of this court, to which one of us was a party held that cocoanuts were not oilseeds within the meaning of item 6(a) of the Second Schedule aforesaid. It was pointed out that in interpreting words of common usage appearing in a taxing statute, the popular meaning, rather than the technical, should be adopted. The Bench was of the view that if oil could be extracted only by an elaborate process after breaking the identity of the seed, it could not be a case of oil-seed.

4. It seems to us that only oil-seeds which without subjecting to much processing yield non-volatile oils, that would be within the ambit of the entry in Section 14. Our attention has been invited to the definition of a kernel, which takes in also a seed. But this does not help the petitioner. A kernel, which is in the nature of a seed, that is to say, a seed which can be sown and which will on sowing germinate, can be considered to be a seed; but not a kernel which has lost the property of a seed. There may be many kernels which may not be seeds and there may be many seeds which may not be kernels. What is important to note in interpreting the scope of the entry is whether the seed, yielding oil, can be looked upon as having the property of a seed, if it has lost the property, it can no longer be considered to be an oil-seed. We are of the view that the word 'seed' must retain its meaning in the phrase oil-seed and it is an article, which, while being a seed, is capable also of yielding oil that can well be described as oil-seed.

5. On that view, we think the petition should fail and it is dismissed. No costs.


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