15 April 2014

Parliament competent to impose Service Tax on Restaurants and hotels: Bombay HC

Bombay HC upholds service tax levy on AC restaurants; Differs from Kerala HC ratio

 

Bombay HC dismisses writ filed by Indian Hotels and Restaurant Association, upholds validity of service tax levy on air-conditioned restaurants serving liquor u/s 65(105)(zzzzv) of Finance Act; Rejects assessee's challenge to Parliament's competence to tax sale / purchase of goods by way of / as part of any service, covered under "State List" read with Article 366(29A)(f) of Indian Constitution; Tax on sale / purchase of goods and tax on services two distinct concepts; To say that Parliament is denuded of its competence to tax restaurant services entails violence to plain language of Constitutional provisions; Service tax does not tax sale of goods, but services provided in such sale; Entry 54 in List II does not envisage service tax on services rendered by restaurant to any person, as referred u/s 65(105)(zzzzv); Rejects Kerala HC's single Judge ruling in Kerala Classified Hotels and Resorts Association for want of categorical finding that tax in question covered by State List; HC accepts Revenue's reliance on SC ruling in Tamil Nadu Kalyana Mandapam pertaining to catering services  : Bombay HC

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