Tuesday, September 14, 2010

BSE Card Is "Intangible Asset" For Depreciation: Supreme Court

Techno Shares & Stocks vs. CIT (Supreme Court)

BSE Card is an "intangible asset" and eligible for depreciation u/s 32(1)(ii)

S. 32 (1), as amended w.e.f. 1.4.1998 allows depreciation on "intangible assets" being, inter alia, "licenses … or any other business or commercial rights of similar nature". The Tribunal took the view that a BSE card was an "intangible asset" eligible for depreciation. On appeal by the Revenue, the High Court (323 ITR 69) reversed the Tribunal on the ground that it was not a "license" and the words "business or commercial rights" relate to intellectual properties and not all categories of business or commercial rights. On appeal by the assessee, HELD reversing the High Court:

.. (iii) Under Rule 5 of the BSE Rules, membership is a personal permission from the Exchange which is nothing but a "licence" which enables the member to exercise rights and privileges attached thereto. It is this licence which enables the member to trade on the floor of the Exchange and to participate in the trading session on the floor of the Exchange. It is this licence which enables the member to access the market. Therefore, the right of membership, which includes right of nomination, is a "licence" or "akin to a licence" which is one of the items which falls in s. 32(1)(ii). The right to participate in the market has an economic and money value. It is an expense incurred by the assessee which satisfies the test of being a "licence" or "any other business or commercial right of similar nature" in terms of s. 32(1)(ii).

Source: ITAT Online

Ankitha Singhvi


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