Search Results For: Rohinton Fali Nariman J.


Spentex Industries Ltd vs. CCE (Supreme Court)

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DATE: October 6, 2015 (Date of pronouncement)
DATE: November 23, 2015 (Date of publication)
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CBDT & Govt are bound by their own interpretation of a statutory provision. Principle of "contemporanea expositio" explained. The word "or" can be interpreted as "and" if the former leads to unintelligible and absurd results

It is to be borne in mind that it is the Central Government which has framed the Rules as well as issued the notifications. If the Central Government itself is of the opinion that the rebate is to be allowed on both the forms of excise duties the government is bound thereby and the rule in-question has to interpreted in accord with this understanding of the rule maker itself. Law in this respect is well settled and, therefore, it is not necessary to burden this judgment by quoting from various decisions

State Bank of Patiala vs. CIT (Supreme Court)

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DATE: November 18, 2015 (Date of pronouncement)
DATE: November 20, 2015 (Date of publication)
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S. 2(7) Interest-tax Act: Right to charge overdue interest on discounted Bills of Exchange is not “interest” as it does not arise on account of delay in repayment of any loan or advance. The right arises on account of default in the payment of amounts due under a discounted bill of exchange

Section 2(7) itself makes a distinction between loans and advances made in India and discount on bills of exchange drawn or made in India. It is obvious that if discounted bills of exchange were also to be treated as loans and advances made in India there would be no need to extend the definition of “interest” to include discount on bills of exchange. Indeed, this matter is no longer res integra. The Karnataka High Court’s view is directly contrary to the view of this Court in CIT v. Sahara India Savings & Investment Corpn. Ltd., (2009) 17 SCC 43, and, therefore, cannot be countenanced. “Loans and advances” has been held to be different from “discounts” and the legislature has kept in mind the difference between the two. It is clear therefore that the right to charge for overdue interest by the assessee banks did not arise on account of any delay in repayment of any loan or advance made by the said banks. That right arose on account of default in the payment of amounts due under a discounted bill of exchange.

Andaman Timber Industries vs. CCE (Supreme Court)

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DATE: September 2, 2015 (Date of pronouncement)
DATE: November 16, 2015 (Date of publication)
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Failure to give the assessee the right to cross-examine witnesses whose statements are relied up results in breach of principles of natural justice. It is a serious flaw which renders the order a nullity

Not allowing the assessee to cross-examine the witnesses by the Adjudicating Authority though the statements of those witnesses were made the basis of the impugned order is a serious flaw which makes the order nullity inasmuch as it amounted to violation of principles of natural justice because of which the assessee was adversely affected

Shabina Abraham & Ors vs. Collector of Central Excise (Supreme Court)

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DATE: July 29, 2015 (Date of pronouncement)
DATE: September 28, 2015 (Date of publication)
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Entire law on the taxation of deceased persons and their estate explained in the context of the Income-tax Act and the Central Excise Act

The individual assessee has ordinarily to be a living person and there can be no assessment on a dead person and the assessment is a charge in respect of the income of the previous year and not a charge in respect of the income of the year of assessment as measured by the income of the previous year. Wallace Brothers & Co. Ltd. v Commissioner of Income-tax. By section 24B of the Income-tax Act the legal representatives have, by fiction of law, become assessees as provided in that section but that fiction cannot be extended beyond the object for which it was enacted

Sri S. N. Wadiyar (Dead) Through LR vs. CWT (Supreme Court)

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DATE: September 21, 2015 (Date of pronouncement)
DATE: September 28, 2015 (Date of publication)
AY: 1977-78 to 1986-87
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Important principles relating to valuation of property subject to the Land Ceiling Act explained in the context of the Wealth-tax Act

One has to assume that the property in question is saleable in the open market and estimate the price which the assumed willing purchaser would pay for such a property. When the asset is under the clutches of the Ceiling Act and in respect of the said asset/vacant land, the Competent Authority under the Ceiling Act had already determined the maximum compensation of Rs.2 lakhs, how much price such a property would fetch if sold in the open market? We have to keep in mind what a reasonably assumed buyer would pay for such a property if he were to buy the same. Such a property which is going to be taken over by the Government and is awaiting notification under Section 10 of the Act for this purpose, would not fetch more than Rs.2 lakhs as the assumed buyer knows that the moment this property is taken over by the Government, he will receive the compensation of Rs.2 lakhs only. We are not oblivious of those categories of buyers who may buy “disputed properties” by taking risks with the hope that legal proceedings may ultimately be decided in favour of the assessee and in such a eventuality they are going to get much higher value. However, as stated above, hypothetical presumptions of such sales are to be discarded as we have to keep in mind the conduct of a reasonable person and “ordinary way” of the presumptuous sale. When such a presumed buyer is not going to offer more than Rs.2 lakhs, obvious answer is that the estimated price which such asset would fetch if sold in the open market on the valuation date(s) would not be more than Rs.2 lakhs

ACIT vs. Victory Aqua Farm Ltd (Supreme Court)

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DATE: September 4, 2015 (Date of pronouncement)
DATE: September 16, 2015 (Date of publication)
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S. 32: The "functional" test has to be applied to determine whether an asset is "plant". Even a pond designed for rearing prawns can be "plant"

In Commissioner of Income Tax vs. Anand Theatres 224 ITR 192 it was held that except in exceptional cases, the building in which the plant is situated must be distinguished from the plant and that, therefore, the assessee’s generating station building was not to be treated as a plant for the purposes of investment allowance. It is difficult to read the judgment in the case of Anand Theatres so broadly. The question before the court was whether a building that was used as a hotel or a cinema theatre could be given depreciation on the basis that it was a “plant” and it was in relation to that question that the court considered a host of authorities of this country and England and came to the conclusion that a building which was used as a hotel or cinema theatre could not be given depreciation on the basis that it was a plant

CIT vs. Meghalaya Steels Ltd (Supreme Court)

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DATE: August 5, 2015 (Date of pronouncement)
DATE: August 18, 2015 (Date of publication)
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S. 260A: High Courts, being Courts of Record under Article 215, have the inherent power of review. There is nothing in s. 260A(7) to restrict the applicability of the provisions of the CPC to s. 260A appeals

High Courts being Courts of Record under Art. 215 of the Constitution of India, the power of review would in fact inhere in them. Section 260A(7) only states that all the provisions that would apply qua appeals in the Code of Civil Procedure would apply to appeals under Section 260A. That does not in any manner suggest either that the other provisions of the Code of Civil Procedure are necessarily excluded or that the High Court’s inherent jurisdiction is in any manner affected

CIT vs. Bhagat Construction Co. Pvt. Ltd (Supreme Court)

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DATE: August 6, 2015 (Date of pronouncement)
DATE: August 17, 2015 (Date of publication)
AY: 1992-93
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S. 234B interest is automatic if conditions are met. Form I.T.N.S. 150 is a part of the assessment order and it is sufficient if the levy of interest is stated there

It will be seen that under the provisions of Section 234B, the moment an assessee who is liable to pay advance tax has failed to pay such tax or where the advance tax paid by such an assessee is less than 90 per cent of the assessed tax, the assessee becomes liable to pay simple interest at the rate of one per cent for every month or part of the month. The levy of such interest is automatic when the conditions of Section 234B are met. The facts of the present case are squarely covered by the decision contained in Kalyankumar Ray’s case inasmuch as it is undisputed that contained a calculation of interest payable on the tax assessed. This being the case, it is clear that as per the said judgment, this Form must be treated as part of the assessment order in the wider sense in which the expression has to be understood in the context of Section 143, which is referred to in Explanation 1 to Section 234B

Fibre Boards (P) Ltd vs. CIT (Supreme Court)

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DATE: August 11, 2015 (Date of pronouncement)
DATE: August 12, 2015 (Date of publication)
AY: 1991-92
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S. 54G does not require that the machinery etc has to be acquired in the same AY in which the transfer takes place. It is sufficient if the capital gain is “utilized” towards purchase of P&M by giving advances to suppliers. Section 24 of the General Clauses Act applies also to ‘omissions’ along with `repeals’ and saves rights given by subordinate legislation

The aforesaid construction by the High Court of Section 54G would render nugatory a vital part of the said Section so far as the assessee is concerned. Under sub-section (1), the assessee is given a period of three years after the date on which the transfer takes place to purchase new machinery or plant and acquire building or land or construct building for the purpose of his business in the said area. If the High Court is right, the assessee has to purchase and/or acquire machinery, plant, land and building within the same assessment year in which the transfer takes place. Further, the High Court has missed the key words “not utilized” in sub-section (2) which would show that it is enough that the capital gain made by the assessee should only be “utilized” by him in the assessment year in question for all or any of the purposes aforesaid, that is towards purchase and acquisition of plant and machinery, and land and building. Advances paid for the purpose of purchase and/or acquisition of the aforesaid assets would certainly amount to utilization by the assessee of the capital gains made by him for the purpose of purchasing and/or acquiring the aforesaid assets

Japan Airlines Co. Ltd vs. CIT (Supreme Court)

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DATE: August 4, 2015 (Date of pronouncement)
DATE: August 6, 2015 (Date of publication)
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S. 194-I: In deciding whether a payment is for "use of land", the substance of the transaction has to be seen. If the payment is for a variety of services and the use of land is minor, the payment cannot be treated as "rent"

When the airlines pay for these charges, treating such charges as charges for ‘use of land’ would be adopting a totally naïve and simplistic approach which is far away from the reality. We have to keep in mind the substance behind such charges. When matter is looked into from this angle, keeping in view the full and larger picture in mind, it becomes very clear that the charges are not for use of land per se and, therefore, it cannot be treated as ‘rent’ within the meaning of Section 194-I of the Act

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