Law Cases- Analysis

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Published on March 2, 2014

Author: gsgurpreetsingh30

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Law Cases Analysed

State Trading Corporation Vs Commercial Tax Officer

MACKINNON MACKENZIE AND Co. VS State of West Bengal

Business Law Presentation Presented By: Gunjan Sachdeva(21/014) Gurpreet Singh(21/015) Jasanpreet Kaur(21/016) Neha Diwakar(21/020) Neha Singh(21/021)

Case I: State Trading Corporation Vs Commercial Tax Officer  Appellant: State Trading Corporation  Respondent: Commercial Tax Officer  Date of Judgement: 26 July 1963

Case Brief:  State Trading Corporation sought relief, in the form of appropriate writs or directions, against various agencies of State Governments on account of Sales Tax assessed against the Corporation.  The petition was filed under Article 32 of the Constitution of India, which empowers the Supreme Court “to issue directions or orders or writs. Appropriate for the enforcement of the fundamental rights.”  The Corporation contested the claims saying that it is Government company, hence a department of the same.

Preliminary Questions: The Constitution bench of 5 Justices referred 2 preliminary questions to a larger special bench of 9 justices of Supreme Court:  Whether the State Trading Corporation, a company registered under the Indian Companies Act 1956, is a citizen within the meaning of the Article 19 of the Constitution and can ask for the enforcement of fundamental rights granted to citizens under the said Article; and  Whether the State Trading Corporation is, not withstanding the formality of incorporation under the Indian Companies Act, 1956, in substance a department and organ of the Government in India with the entirety of its capital contributed by Government; and can it claim to enforce fundamental rights under part III of the Constitution against the state as defined in Article 12 thereof.

Judgement : Appeal Dismissed

Reasons:  Distinction between person and citizens  All citizens are persons but all persons are not citizens Implied Powers of Corporate Entity: As per Companies Act, “The new legal personality of a company emerges from the moment of incorporation and from the date the persons subscribing to MOA and other persons joining as members are regarded as a body corporate or Corporation aggregate and the new person begins to function as an entity”. Thus, The Corporation has no physical existence; it is a mere “Abstraction of law”  Its functions being commercial it cannot be regarded as one of the departments of the Government of India

Case II: MACKINNON MACKENZIE AND Co. VS State of West Bengal  APPELLANT: Mackinnon Mackenzie and Co.  RESPONDENT: State of West Bengal  DATE OF JUDGEMENT: 30 November 1966

FACTS:  Mackinnon Mackenzie & Co. Private Limited was incorporated on     30th March, 1951, under the provisions of the Indian Companies Act, 1913, as a public limited company It became a private limited company on and from 27th March, 1956 The registered office of the company is situate at 16, Strand Road, Calcutta The Company wanted to relocate its registered office from Calcutta to Bombay to enhance business interest The Government of West Bengal objected on the grounds of losing revenue for the state

JUDGEMENT: Appeal upheld; Government claim dismissed REASON:  Under Section 17 of the Companies Act a company may, by special resolution, alter the provisions of its memorandum so as to change the place of its registered office from one State to another  Dominant factors in favor of the change of office were resolution of the company and interest of creditors and shareholders.

Positive grounds in support:  The head office is at Bombay since about the year 1964  The control of the company is at Bombay  It would be advantageous to have the registered office at Bombay  The volume of business is larger at Bombay because of coastal restrictions and difficulties of trade with Burma and Malaya  The number of calls of ships is larger at Bombay  The number of employees is larger at Bombay  The senior staff is at Bombay

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