Central Excise Act, 1944
4. VALUATION OF EXCISABLE GOODS FOR PURPOSES OF CHARGING OF DUTY OF EXCISE.
(1) Where under this Act, the duty of excise is chargeable on any excisable goods with reference to value, such value, shall, subject to the other provisions of this section, be deemed to be –
(a) the normal price thereof, that is to say, the price at which such goods are ordinarily sold by the assessee to a buyer in the course of wholesale trade for delivery at the time and place of removal, where the buyer is not a related person and the price is the sole consideration for the sale:
Provided that -
( i ) where, in accordance with the normal practice of the wholesale trade in such goods, such goods are sold by the assessee at different prices to different classes of buyers (not being related persons) each such price shall, subject to the existence of the other circumstances specified in clause (a), be deemed to be the normal price of such goods in relation to each such class of buyers;
[ 26 ( ia ) where the price at which such goods are ordinarily sold by the assessee is different for different places of removal, each such price shall, subject to the existence of other circumstances specified in clause (a), be deemed to be the normal price of such goods in relation to each such place of removal; 26 ]
(ii) where such goods are sold by the assessee in the course of wholesale trade for delivery at the time and place of removal at a price fixed under any law for the time being in force or at a price, being the maximum, fixed under any such law, then, notwithstanding anything contained in clause (iii) of this proviso, the price or the maximum price, as the case may be, so fixed, shall, in relation to the goods so sold, be deemed to be the normal price thereof;
(iii) where the assessee so arranges that the goods are generally not sold by him in the course of wholesale trade except to or through a related person, the normal price of the goods sold by the assessee to or through such related person shall be deemed to be the price at which they are ordinarily sold by the related person in the course of wholesale trade at the time of removal, to dealers (not being related persons) or where such goods are not sold to such dealers, to dealers (being related persons), who sell such goods in retail;
(b) where the normal price of such goods is not ascertainable for the reason, that such goods are not sold or for any other reason, the nearest ascertainable equivalent thereof determined in such manner as may be prescribed. 27
(2) Where, in relation to any excisable goods the price thereof for delivery at the place of removal is not known and the value thereof is determined with reference to the price for delivery at a place other than the place of removal, the cost of transportation from the place of removal to the place of delivery shall be excluded from such price.
(3) The provisions of this section shall not apply in respect of any excisable goods for which a tariff value has been fixed under sub-section (2) of section 3.
(4) For the purposes of this section, -
(a) " assessee " means the person who is liable to pay the duty of excise under this Act and includes his agent;
(b) " place of removal" means –
( i ) a factory or any other place or premises of production or manufacture of the excisable goods; [ 28 * * * 28 ]
(ii) a warehouse or any other place or premises wherein the excisable goods have been permitted to be deposited without payment of duty;
[ 29 (iii) a depot, premises of a consignment agent or any other place or premises from where the excisable goods are to be sold after their clearance from the factory and, 29 ] from where such goods are removed;
[ 29 ( ba ) "time of removal", in respect of goods removed from the place of removal referred to in sub-clause (iii) of clause (b), shall be deemed to be the time at which such goods are cleared from the factory; 29 ]
(c) "related person" means a person who is so associated with the assessee that they have interest, directly or indirectly, in the business of each other and includes a holding company, a subsidiary company, a relative and a distributor of the assessee , and any sub-distributor of such distributor.
Explanation : In this clause "holding company", "subsidiary company" and "relative" have the same meanings as in the Companies Act, 1956 (1 of 1956);
(d) " value ", in relation to any excisable goods, -
( i ) where the goods are delivered at the time of removal in a packed condition, includes the cost of such packing except the cost of the packing which is of a durable nature and is returnable by the buyer to the assessee .
Explanation : In this sub-clause, "packing" means the wrapper, container, bobbin, pirn , spool, reel or warp beam or any other thing in which or on which the excisable goods are wrapped, contained or wound;
(ii) does not include the amount of the duty of excise, sales tax and other taxes, if any, payable on such goods and, subject to such rules as may be made, the trade discount (such discount not being refundable on any account whatsoever) allowed in accordance with the normal practice of the wholesale trade at the time of removal in respect of such goods sold or contracted for sale.
[ 30 Explanation : For the purposes of this sub-clause, the amount of the duty of excise payable on any excisable goods shall be the sum total of –
(a) the effective duty of excise payable on such goods under this Act; and
(b) the aggregate of the effective duties of excise payable under other Central Acts, if any, providing for the levy of duties of excise on such goods, and the effective duty of excise on such goods under each Act referred to in clause (a) or clause (b) shall be, -
( i ) in a case where a notification or order providing for any exemption (not being an exemption for giving credit with respect to, [ 31 or reduction of duty of excise under such Act on such goods equal to, any duty of excise under such Act, or the additional duty under section 3 of the Customs Tariff Act, 1975 (51 of 1975), already paid 31 ] on the raw material or component parts used in the production or manufacture of such goods) from the duty of excise under such Act is for the time being in force, the duty of excise computed with reference to the rate specified in such Act, in respect of such goods as reduced so as to give full and complete effect to such exemption; and
(ii) in any other case, the duty of excise computed with reference to the rate specified in such Act in respect of such goods. 30 ]
(e) " wholesale trade" means sales to dealers, industrial consumers, Government, local authorities and other buyers, who or which purchase their requirements otherwise than in retail. 25 ]
Comment : "It is relevant to note that the packing, of which the cost is included, is the packing, in which the goods are wrapped, contained or wound when the goods are delivered at the time of removal. In other words, it is the packing in which it is ordinarily sold in the course of wholesale trade to the. wholesale buyer. The degree of packing in which the excisable article is contained will vary from one class of articles to another. From the particulars detailed before us by the assessees , it is apparent that the cost of primary packing, that is to say, the packing in which the article is contained and in which it is made marketable for the ordinary consumer, for example a tube of toothpaste or a bottle of tablets in a cardboard carton, or biscuits in a paper wrapper or in a tin container, must be regarded as falling within Section 4 (4) (d) ( i )"Union of India v.. Bombay Tyre International Ltd., AIR 1984 SUPREME COURT 420