Cases Reported and Articles Published in 2015 SCC Vol. 7 August 21, 2015 Part 3

  • Independence of Tribunals in India: The role, functions and independence of Tribunals in India has been discussed in this article. Tribunal System: The Indian Perspective by P. Chandrasekhar, (2015) 7 SCC (J-10)
  • Challenge to Arbitral Awards: This article throws light upon the grounds to challenge arbitration awards and the effects of amendments to the Arbitration Act on arbitration awards in India. Grounds to Challenge Arbitration Awards: Will Amendments to the Arbitration Act Bring “Acche Din”? by Ashish Dholakia, (2015) 7 SCC (J-1)
  • Customs — Countervailing duty (CVD) — Levy of additional duty on imported articles — Benefit of Noti. No. 64/93-CE dt. 28-2-1993 issued under R. 8 of Central Excise Rules, 1944: Aim of exemption Noti. No. 64/93-CE granting additional exemption of 10% countervailing duty is to extend benefits to importers of saloon cars to use said cars for tourist taxis. Thus, for the purpose of getting benefit of remission of CVD under concession notification, importer shall be treated as manufacturer. Since CVD is imposed on importer as if it were on a manufacturer and as if it were excise duty, importer would be entitled to payment of concessional/reduced rate of countervailing duty in terms of any notification providing for such exemption/remission of excise duty for a like article if produced/manufactured in India. Aidek Tourism Services (P) Ltd. v. Commr. of Customs, (2015) 7 SCC 429
  • Evidence Act, 1872 — S. 132 and proviso thereto — Abrogation of law of privilege in India under: S. 132 proviso is a necessary corollary of Art. 20(3) of the Constitution, the former protecting witnesses from self-incrimination, the latter protecting accused from self-incrimination. Policy under S. 132 of the Evidence Act, 1872 appears to be to secure evidence from whatever sources it is available for doing justice in a case brought before the court. In the process of securing such evidence, if a witness who is under obligation to state the truth, makes any statement which will incriminate or tend to expose such a witness to a penalty or forfeiture of any kind, the proviso to S. 132 of the Evidence Act, 1872 grants immunity to such a witness by declaring that “no such answer given by the witness shall subject him to any arrest or prosecution or be proved against him in any criminal proceeding”. R. Dinesh kumar v. State, (2015) 7 SCC 497
  • Excise — Classification of goods — Interpretation of Tariff Entry: Inclusion of products in an entry is based on primary use of product. When primary use of product is security and not quality of being adhesive as in present case (security holograms), factor of adhesiveness is incidental to primary use to which goods are put, namely, that they are to be used for security purposes. Holostick India Ltd. v. CCE, (2015) 7 SCC 401
  • Income Tax — Business or Revenue Expenditure — Interest — Deductibility of, under S. 36(1)(iii), IT Act, 1961: Only prerequisites for deductibility of interest are that: (a) interest was paid on capital borrowed by assessee, (b) this   borrowing was for purpose of business or profession of assessee. If these two prerequisites are established, assessee is entitled to deduction of full amount of interest in AY in which it is incurred or paid. Revenue can only examine genuineness of the business borrowing, and that it was for business purposes and not an illusionary and colourable transaction. Once said genuineness is established, Revenue cannot question rate of interest, either that it is too high or too low, or tamper with transaction/scheme of borrowing in any way. Taparia Tools Ltd. v. CIT, (2015) 7 SCC 540
  • Information Technology, Internet, Computer and Cyber Laws — Social Networking: Facebook is a public forum. It facilitates expression of public opinion. Posting of one’s grievances against Government machinery, even on Government Facebook page does not by itself amount to criminal conduct. Manik Taneja v. State of Karnataka, (2015) 7 SCC 423
  • Maharashtra Control of Organised Crime Act, 1999 (30 of 1999) — Ss. 2(1)(d), (e) & (f) & 3 and 21(4) — Applicability of: Minimum three offences are required to constitute “continuing unlawful activity” for applicability of MCOCA and all three offences concerned should fall within definition of “organised crime” and should have been committed by accused concerned as a member of an organised crime syndicate or on behalf of an organized crime syndicate either singly or jointly. Even if the earlier two offences were not initiated under the provisions of MCOCA such offences should have been capable of being brought within the provisions of MCOCA, namely, as part of an activity of an organised crime syndicate either by its own members either singly or jointly or though not as a member but such participation should have been on behalf of an “organised crime syndicate”. Prasad Shrikant Purohit v. State of Maharashtra, (2015) 7 SCC 440

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