CIT vs. CitiBank N.A. (Supreme Court)

Interest paid for broken period should not be considered as part of the purchase price, but should be allowed as revenue expenditure in the year of purchase of securities. American Express vs. CIT 258 ITR 601 (Bom) affirmed, Vijaya Bank 187 ITR 541 (SC) distinguished

It was argued on behalf of the Revenue, that in view of the judgment in Vijaya Bank Ltd.’s case [1991] 187 ITR 541 (SC), even if the securities were treated as part of the trading assets, the income therefrom had to be assessed under section 18 of the Act and not under section 28 of the Act as income from securities can only come within section 18 and not under section 28. We do not find any merit in this argument. Firstly, as stated above, Vijaya Bank Ltd.’s case [1991] 187 ITR 541 (SC) has no application to the facts of this case. Secondly, in the present case, the Tribunal has found that the securities were held as trading assets. Thirdly, it has been held by the Supreme Court in the subsequent decision reported in the case of CIT v. Cocanada Radhaswami Bank Ltd. [1965] 57 ITR 306, that income from securities can also come under section 28 as income from business. This judgment is very important. It analyses the judgment of the Supreme Court in United Commercial Bank Ltd.’s case [1957] 32 ITR 688, which has been followed by the Supreme Court in Vijaya Bank Ltd.’s case [1991] 187 ITR 541. It is true that once an income falls under section 18, it cannot come under section 28. However, as laid down by the Supreme Court in Cocanada Radhaswami Bank Ltd.’s case [1965] 57 ITR 306, income from securities treated as trading assets can come under section 28. In the present case, the Department has treated income from securities under section 28.

CIT vs. CitiBank N.A. (Supreme Court)

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