1. The respondents in all the four cases are the same and they were assessees under the Central Sales Tax Act, 1956. For the assessment years 1958-59 to 1961-62, it was found that they had purchased motor spare parts on the basis of the 'C' form certificate issued to them under the provisions of the Central Sales Tax Act for sale, but instead of selling them, they used them for their own consumption. The revenue proceeded on the basis that since the goods purchased were not used for the purpose specified in Section 8(3)(b) and as recorded in the 'C' form certificate, the assessee has committed an offence under Section 10(d) of the Act in that he has used the goods purchased by him on the basis of the 'C' form certificate for a purpose Other than the one mentioned therein and, therefore, they are liable to penalty as well. All the authorities below, including the Tribunal, have found that the assessee has actually committed the offence under Section 10(d) in using the goods for a purpose other than the one mentioned in the 'C' form certificate. Being a finding of fact, we have to accept the same and proceed on the basis that the assessees have committed the offence.
2. The question is what is the quantum of penalty that has to be levied under Section 10-A of the Act. Section 10-A empowers the authority who is competent to grant the certificate of registration to impose a penalty in a sum not exceeding 1 times the tax which would' have been levied under this Act in respect of the sale to him of the goods if the offence had not been committed. The Tribunal accepted the assessee's contention that the penalty leviable under Section 10-A in this case should be 1 times the concessional rate of tax and not 1 times the tax which would have been leviable if no 'C' form certificate had been produced. In these tax cases, the revenue challenges the correctness of the view taken by the Tribunal.
3. We find that the scope of Section 10-A came up for consideration before a Division Bench of this Court in State of Madras v. Prem Industrial Corporation  24 S.T.C. 507. In that case, Veeraswami, C.J., speaking for the Bench, has clearly laid down that the concluding words of Section 10-A, 'if the offence had not been committed' should govern the situation and that the penalty under that section should not exceed 1 times the tax which would have been levied under the Act in respect of the sale effected by the assessee if the offence had not been committed and that any other view will be inconsistent with the express words of the statutory provision. The following observations appear to be pertinent :
The words 'if the offence had not been committed' clearly points to the result that the tax for purposes of assessing one and a half times thereof is not that which would have been levied on the basis that the 'C' forms had not been complied with or have been misused, but, as if they have been used in a proper way. If that were not the case, there would be no meaning to the last words we have referred to.
4. We are in entire agreement with the view expressed in that case. The learned Government Pleader has brought to our notice a decision of the Mysore High Court in Pais and Sons v. State of Mysore  17 S.T.C. 161 and a decision of the Orissa High Court in Bisra Limestone Company Ltd. v. Sales Tax Officer  27 S.T.C. 531. taking a different view. He also points out that in Bisra Limestone Company Ltd. v. Sales Tax Officer  27 S.T.C. 531, the decision of this court in State of Madras v. Prem Industrial Corporation1 was specifically referred to, but not accepted as laying down the correct principle. We have gone through the above decisions and we find that they had proceeded on the basis that if an offence had been committed under Section 10-A, it must be taken that the concerned assessee never applied for and obtained any valid certificate in form 'C' which would entitle him to have the beneficial rate of tax and that, therefore, the penalty leviable under Section 10-A can only be 1 times the normal tax, i.e., 1 times the tax the dealer will have to pay if he had no'C' form certificate. If the principle on which the learned Judges proceeded is correct, then there is no question of any offence being committed by the assessee in not taking a 'C' form certificate, though the assessee may be thrown open to a larger and normal rate of tax in the place of the concessional rate of tax. With due respect we are, therefore, not inclined to accept the principle laid down in the above two decisions of the Mysore and the Orissa High Courts.
5. The result is that the tax cases are dismissed with costs in one set of Rs. 150.