M/S. Sandur Micro
Circuits Ltd. Vs. C.C.E, Belgaum  INSC 1360 (13 August 2008)
IN THE SUPREME COURT
OF INDIA CIVIL APPELLATE JURISDICTION CIVIL APPEAL NO. 7177 OF 2005 M/s. Sandur
Micro Circuits Ltd. .....Appellant Versus Commissioner of Central Excise,
Respondent With CIVIL
APPEAL NO. OF 2008 (Arising out of SLP (C) No. 16719 of 2006) With CIVIL APPEAL
NO. OF 2008 (Arising out of SLP (C) No. 16947 of 2006) With CIVIL APPEAL NO.
6897 OF 2005
Dr. ARIJIT PASAYAT,
granted in SLP (C) Nos. 16719 of 2006 and 16947 of 2006.
all these appeals common questions are involved and are directed against the
judgment and final order passed by the Customs, Excise and Service Tax
Appellate Tribunal (in short the `Tribunal). Since in appeals filed by the
appellants common question of law is involved, there is no need to elaborately
deal with the factual aspects. Question is the effect of a circular issued by
Central Board of Excise and Custom (in short the `Board') i.e. Circular No. 42
of 1997 dated 19.9.1997. The CESTAT held that the Notification No. 2/95-CE
dated 4.1.1995 as amended by Notifications Nos. 21/97-CE dated 11.4.1997,
100/95-CE dated 2.6.1995 and 7/96-CE dated 1.7.1996 shall have overriding
effect over the Circular. It held that there is no manner of doubt that the
appellant's claim of liability to pay 50% of the aggregated customs duty on the
goods cleared to the Domestic Tariff Area (in short the `DTA') is not legally
tenable. It was held that the Circular was in direct conflict with the
Notification No. 2/95.
counsel for the appellant in each case submitted that the Circular was issued
on the basis of representations made by various assessees and therefore the
Notification cannot stand on the way of relief being granted.
counsel for the respondent on the other hand submitted that the Notification
which is statutorily issued has overriding effect because the Notifications are
issued in exercise of powers conferred by sub-section (1) of Section 5A of the
Central Excises and Salt Act, 1944 (in short the `Act').
issue relating to effectiveness of a Circular contrary to a Notification
statutorily issued has been examined by this Court in several cases. A Circular
cannot take away the effect of Notifications statutorily issued. In fact in
certain cases it has been held that the Circular cannot whittle down the
Exemption Notification and restrict the scope of the Exemption Notification or
hit it down. In other words it was held that by issuing a circular a new
condition thereby restricting the scope of the exemption or restricting or 3
whittling it down cannot be imposed. The principle is applicable to the instant
cases also, though the controversy is of different nature.
appeals fail and are dismissed.
(Dr. ARIJIT PASAYAT)