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2002 (3) TMI 45 - CST, VAT & Sales Tax
Whether the trust-Sai Publication Fund, which has been set up by some devotees of Saibaba of Shiridi for spreading his message, can be held to be a "dealer" in respect of sale of books, booklets, pamphlets, photos, stickers and other publications containing message of Saibaba and the turnover of such publication can be assessed to sales tax under the Bombay Sales Tax Act, 1959 ?
Held that:- the question of profit motive or no profit motive would be relevant only where person carries on trade, commerce, manufacture or adventure in the nature of trade, commerce, etc. On the facts and in the circumstances of the present case irrespective of the profit motive, it could not be said that the trust either was a "dealer" or was carrying on trade, commerce, etc. The trust is not carrying on trade, commerce, etc., in the sense of occupation to be a "dealer" as its main object is to spread the message of Saibaba of Shiridi as already noticed above. Having regard to all aspects of the matter, the High Court was right in answering the question referred by the Tribunal in the affirmative and in favour of the respondent-assessee. We must however add here that whether a particular person is a "dealer" and whether he carries on "business" are matters to be decided on the facts and in the circumstances of each case.
The question set out in the beginning in the negative and in favour of the respondent-assessee.