Monday, January 27, 2014

Sec. 13 not violated if firm owned by trustee won tender floated by trust or when trustee got business advances

Where firm of managing trustee won construction bids on competitive basis and sum was advanced to said firm, neither section 13(2)(c), nor section 13(1)(d) was violated.
The Tribunal held as in favour of assessee as under:
1)  The Assessing Officer (‘AO’) declined to grant benefit of section 11, as in the present case construction of building had been carried out by the firm of a managing trustee and, thus, derived direct benefit from the assessee-trust;
2)  A perusal of section 13(2)(c) would show that the income or property of the trust or any part of it had be deemed to have been used or applied for the benefit of the person referred to in sub-section (3), if any amount was paid by way of salary, allowance or otherwise to any person referred to in sub-section (3) out of the resources of the trust for services rendered and the amount so paid was in excess of what might be reasonably be paid for such services;
3)  In the instant case, the AO had outrightly held that the assessee was not entitled to the benefit of section 11 without ascertaining the reasonableness of the amount paid for the services rendered;
4)  The construction contract had been awarded to the firm on the basis of open bid. Since the firm quoted lowest rates, the contract was awarded to the firm. Since the contract was awarded on competitive basis and the profit earned was reasonable, the provisions of section 13(2)(c) were not violated;

5) The CIT (A) had given a well reasoned finding that the sum advanced by the assessee to the firm was business advance. The amounts were advanced for the on-going construction work in the normal course of business activity. The order of CIT(A) was to be confirmed and the appeal of the revenue was to be dismissed – Dy. DIT(Exemptions) v. Sri Vekkaliamman Educational & Charitable Trust [2013] 40 478 (Chennai - Trib.)