COMMISSIONER OF CENTRAL EXCISE & SERVICE TAX Vs. SIMPLEX INFRASTRUCTURE & FOUNDRY WORKS
May, 23rd 2013
THE HIGH COURT OF DELHI AT NEW DELHI
% Judgment delivered on: 23.04.2013
+ CEAC No.28/2012
COMMISSIONER OF CENTRAL EXCISE & SERVICE TAX
SIMPLEX INFRASTRUCTURE & FOUNDRY WORKS
Advocates who appeared in this case:
For the Appellant : Mr Satish Kumar, Sr. Standing Counsel.
For the Respondent : Mr L.P. Asthana and Ms Praveena Gautam,
HON'BLE MR JUSTICE BADAR DURREZ AHMED
HON'BLE MR JUSTICE VIBHU BAKHRU
BADAR DURREZ AHMED, J (ORAL)
CM No. 14721/2012 (Exemption)
Allowed subject to all just exceptions.
CM No. 14722/2012 (Delay)
The delay in filing the appeal is condoned.
CEAC 28/2012 & CM No. 14720/2012(Stay)
1 This appeal has been filed on behalf of the Revenue being aggrieved by
the order dated 13.07.2011 passed by the Customs, Excise & Service Tax,
Appellate Tribunal, Principal Bench, New Delhi in ST/Appeal No. 418/2007
ITA No.28/2012 Page 1 of 3
which arose out of the order dated 30.04.2007 passed by the Commissioner of
Customs & Central Excise, Raipur.
2 The only question which is sought to be raised in the present appeal is
whether the definition of `Consulting Engineer' as appeared in Section 65(31) of
the Finance Act, 1994 as applicable to the period 1997-2001, includes a
`company' or not.
3 It is an admitted position that the respondent is a private limited company
incorporated under the Companies Act, 1956. According to the appellant, the
respondent would be covered by the definition of `Consulting Engineer' in
Section 65(31) of the Finance Act, 1994 as it existed at the relevant time. In
order to appreciate the argument advanced on behalf of the appellant, it would be
appropriate if we set out the provisions of this Section; to the extent relevant, as it
existed during the relevant time :
"Section 65. Definitions
In this Chapter, unless the context otherwise requires:-
xxxx xxxx xxxx xxxx xxxx
(31). "consulting engineer" means any professionally
qualified engineer or an engineering firm who, either
directly or indirectly, renders any advice, consultancy or
technical assistance in any manner to a client in one or more
disciplines of engineering;
xxxx xxxx xxxx xxxx xxxx"
4 It may be relevant to point out that the words "an engineering firm"
appearing in the above definition, were substituted by the Finance Act, 2006 with
effect from 01.05.2006 with the words "any body corporate or any other firm". It
is, therefore, clear that the expression "any body corporate" was introduced with
effect from 01.05.2006. But, in the present case, the relevant period is 1997-
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2001. At that point of time, the expression "any body corporate" was not
included in the said definition of `consulting engineer'.
5 The learned counsel for the appellant submitted that Section 3(42) of the
General Clauses Act, 1897 ought to be pressed into service. He submitted that
the word `person' includes any company or association or body of individuals
whether incorporated or not. However, we fail to understand as to how the
learned counsel for the appellant can place reliance on Section 3(42) of the
General Clauses Act. That provision would only apply where the word `person'
is used in any Act or Regulation. The definition of `consulting engineer' as
provided in Section 65(31) of the Finance Act, 1994, as it existed during the
relevant period, did not employ the word `person' at all. Consequently, the
provisions of Section 3(42) of the General Clauses Act, 1897 would not apply.
6 From a reading of the impugned order, we find that the Karnataka High
Court has also taken the view that the expression `consulting engineer' as it
appeared in Section 65(31) of the Finance Act, 1994, at the relevant time (i.e.
prior to 01.05.2006), did not include "a private limited company or any other
7 In view of the foregoing, no substantial question of law arises for our
8 The appeal is dismissed.
BADAR DURREZ AHMED, J
VIBHU BAKHRU, J
APRIL 23, 2013rk/`ns'
ITA No.28/2012 Page 3 of 3