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P L D 1976 KARACHI 1238

BURMAH SHELL OIL STORAGE & DISTRIBUTING CO. LTD

V/S

EXCISE & TAXATION OFFICER L DIVISION KARACHI AND ANOTHER


(a) Constitution of Pakistan(1956) Arts. 117, 225, 242, 134

—S. 10 and West Pakistan Finance Act (IX of 1963), S. 8 read with Professions Tax Limitation Act (XX of 1941), S. 2 and Constitution of Pakistan (1962), Arts. 134, 141, 225(7) & 242; Constitution of Pakistan (1956), Art. 117(2) and Government of India Act, 1935, S. 142-A—Levy of tax on profession etc.—Professions Tax Limitation Act, 1941 cannot be deemed to be a Central law made by or under authority of Central Legislature of Pakistan—No restriction on power of Provincial Legislature with regard to imposition of professional taxes.

The submission in the instant case was that sections 10 and 8 of the West Pakistan Finance Acts, of 1962 and 1963, respectively in so far as they purported to levy a tax on import and export of trades in excess of Rs. 50 per annum, are inconsistent with section 2 of the Professions Tax Limitation Act, 1941 (Act No. XX of 1941) and are accordingly invalid.

It was further contended that this Central Act fixed the limit to the imposition of a tax by a Provincial Law on a person engaged in professions, trades, callings or employments in excess of Rs. 50 per annum, and therefore, the Provincial Legislature had no power to impose a tax in excess of such limit, as is provided in Article 141 of the Constitution of 1962.

The professions Tax Limitation Act, 1941 because a redundant law upon the coming into force of the 1956 Constitution. However, it is still on the statute book as it was adapted in 1960 by the Central Law (statutes Reforms) Ordinance, 1960. Even if the profession Tax Limitation Act, 1941 was an “existing law” as defined in Article 225(7) of the Constitution of 1962 fixing the limit of the Professional tax of Rs. 50 per annum, the question is whether the Provincial legislature had ant power to exceed such limit under Article 141 of the said Constitution. That Articles provides that a provincial law may impose taxes not exceeding such limits as may from to time to time be fixed by Act of the Central Legislature on persons engaged in professions, trades, callings of employments. It is clear from the wording of this Article that it is prospective and curtails the power of the Provincial Legislature to impose the professional tax in future exceeding such limits as may from time be fixed by Act of the Central Legislature. No such Act of the Central Legislature has yet been passed. The Central legislature has been defined in Article 242 of the Constitution of 1962 as meaning the Central Legislature of Pakistan which makes it further clear that until the Central Legislature of Pakistan fixes a limit to the professional tax by an Act, there was no restriction on the power of the provincial Legislature with regard to imposition of professional taxes. Further, had there been such Act of the provincial Legislature, the provincial law imposing professional tax in excess of the limit, would be inconsistent with the Central law, and under Article 134 of the Constitution it would be invalid to the extent of the inconsistency. The Central law referred to in Article 242 as meaning a law made by or under the authority of the Central Legislature. It is therefore, abundantly clear that the professions Tax limitation Act, 1941 cannot be deemed to be a Central Law made by or under the authority of the Central Legislature of Pakistan. [p. 1243] A

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