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Commissioner Of Income Tax vs Tamil Nadu Co-Operative … on 4 March, 1998

Madras High Court
Commissioner Of Income Tax vs Tamil Nadu Co-Operative … on 4 March, 1998
Equivalent citations: (1999) 151 CTR Mad 232
Author: N V Balasubramanian


JUDGMENT

N. V. Balasubramanian, J.

The

assessee is a co-operative marketing federation limited registered under the Co-operative Societies Act, and mainly deals, inter alia, in general fertilisers, products from mixing units, etc. The Income Tax Officer, for the assessment year 1977-78, rejected the claim of the assessee for exemption under section 80P(2)(a)(iv) of the Income Tax Act (hereinafter referred to as `the Act’) of a sum of Rs. 6,429 being the sale proceeds in the fertiliser granulation plant of the assessee. The Income Tax Officer held that the income from sale of agricultural commodities and from fertiliser granulation plant mixing unit were not exempted from the above provisions as claimed by the assessee.

2. The Commissioner (Appeals), on appeal preferred by the assessee, held that the assessee was not entitled to exemption on the sale of the scrap amounting to Rs. 6,429. In so far as the disputed amounts are concerned viz., Rs. 13,55,933 and Rs. 17,68,237 the Commissioner (Appeals) found that they represented entries made in order to rectify double debits made in earlier years and the Appellate Assistant Commissioner accepted the case that there was double entry and these two entries relate to the assessee’s business in fertilisers and fix the two items, the assessee was entitled to exemption under section 80P(2)(a)(iv) of the Act.

3. The revenue has challenged the order of the Appellate Assistant Commissioner by filing an appeal before the Tribunal and the Tribunal concurred with the order of the Commissioner (Appeals) and held that the assessee was entitled to exemption on the sale of scrap as well as on the sums of Rs. 13,55,933 and Rs. 17,68,237. The revenue has challenged the order of the Tribunal and obtained reference on the following question of law :

“Whether on the facts and in the circumstances of the case the Tribunal was right in holding that the sum of Rs. 31,30,599 consisting of :

 
 

Rs.

(a)

Profit in fertiliser granulation plant

6,429

(b)

Release of purchase provision (fertiliser)

13,55,933

(c)

Release of trade charge provision created to the trading account of the fertiliser unit is exempt from tax under section 80P (2)(a)(iv) of the Act

17,68,237?

4. Mr. C.V. Rajan, learned counsel for the revenue fairly brought to our notice an earlier decision of this court in the case of CIT v. T.N. Co-op. Marketing Federation Ltd. (1983) 144 ITR 74 (Mad), wherein this court considered the claim of exemption under section 80P of the Act with reference to the same assessee for the earlier assessment years 1974-75 and 1975-76 and held that the assessee is a federation of primary co-operative societies, purchased fertilisers and sold them to various member societies and not to the actual agriculturists. This court in the said case held that the benefit of section 80P(2) of the Act was available to the assessee and held that the Tribunal was justified in holding that the assessee was entitled to the benefits of section 80P of the Act. The decision in this court makes it clear that the assessee, though it is a federation of primary co-operative societies, is entitled to the benefit under section 80P of the Act.

5. In so far as the two amounts are concerned, which are the subject-matter of tax case reference is concerned, the first item relates to the sale proceeds of the scrap in fertiliser granulation plant. There is no dispute that the income from the fertiliser granulation plant to the extent that the sales are effected to the members would be exempted under section 80P of the Act and the sale of the scrap, in our opinion, is governed by the same criterion regarding the exemption referred to in section 80P(2)(a)(iv) of the Act and the sale of scrap also would qualify for exemption under section 80P of the Act, but, the deduction will be limited to the sale to its members, but, not to the outsiders. In so far as the other two amounts are concerned, viz., Rs. 13,55,933 and Rs. 17,68,237, the Tribunal found that there was a double addition in the earlier year and the profit under section 80P(2)(a)(iv) of the Act has to be enhanced to the extent of the double addition. The Tribunal held that it represented the sale of the fertiliser. Once it is found that the amount realised was on the sale of the fertiliser, on the profit realised on the sale of the fertiliser to the assessee’s members, the assessee would be entitled to exemption under section 80P of the Act. We are of the opinion that the earlier decision of this court rendered in the assessee’s own case for the earlier two assessment years would equally also apply to the facts and circumstances of the case and the Tribunal was justified in holding that, with reference to the three amounts, the assessee is entitled to exemption under section 80 of the Act. There is no infirmity in the order of the Tribunal.

6. Accordingly, our answer to the question of law, referred to us is in the affirmative and against the revenue. In the circumstances of the case, there will be no order as to costs.

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