Statement showing the names of different Acts with brief notes on the respective Acts are given under :
i) Bengal Agricualtural Income Tax Act, 1944 :
This Act was introduced to tax the income generated from agricultural sector and included income from rent and revenue. After abolition of the zamindari system; under the West Bengal Estate Acquisition Act, 1953, the assesses could be broadly divided into three categories, viz., large individual cultivators, individual tea cultivators and the tea companies. Income received from rent or revenue of agricultural lands, and agricultural operation without any process of manufacture are treated as hundred per cent agricultural income for all categories of assesses. For assesses deriving income from cultivation, manufacture and sale of tea, their income is treated as mixed income and forty per cent of such income is treated as business; income while the balance amount is treated as agricultural income and assessable under the Bengal Agricultural Income Tax Act, 1944. If any assessee derives income from sale of green tea leaves, it becomes hundred per cent agricultural income.
Agricultural income tax on income received by assesses other than Company, Firm or other Association of persons from agricultural crops other than tea has been abolished from financial year 1993-94. Assesses of Company, Firm and other Association of Persons have also been excluded from liability to pay agricultural income tax on income received from agricultural crops other than tea from the financial year 1994-95. Presently, only the tea assesses have to pay the agricultural income tax.
ii) The West Bengal Primary Education Act, 1973 :
This Directorate is responsible for administration and collection of Education Cess
payable under the Act by the tea-estates only. The collection of the cess goes to a fund called the Primary School Council Fund.
The cess is calculated at a prescribed rate on the quantum of green tea leaves produced by the tea estates.
iii) The West Bengal Rural Employment and Production Act, 1976 :
This Directorate is responsible for administration and collection of Rural Employment
Cess payable under the Act by the tea-estates. The collection of the cess goes to a fund called West Bengal Rural Employment and Production Fund.
The Cess is calculated at a prescribed rate on the ;quantum of green tea leaves produced by the tea estates.
iv) The Bengal Amusements Tax Act, 1922 :
The Act envisaged to impose tax on certain forms of entertainments like film shows,
Musical soirees, betting on horse-racing on sports and games held in an amusement park, theme park or water games park, pool game or bowling game etc. This is one of the earliest tax measures introduced in the country. Presently, bulk of the revenue collected under this Act comes from sources like film shows in commercial cinema halls and betting on horse-racing.
v) The West Bengal Entertainments and Luxuries (Hotels and Restaurants) Tax Act,
The taxes imposed under ;this Act can be classified into two categories entertainment tax and luxury tax. The entertainment tax is imposed on certain types of entertainments like cabaret, dance, floor shows, etc. performed; in air-conditioned hotels and restaurants. The luxury tax is imposed on hotels and restaurants providing ;air-conditioning facilities.
Entertainment tax is calculated on the total sum paid by the person admitted to the place of entertainment. While luxury tax on hotels is payable on the daily charges realised for occupied air-conditioned rooms, luxury tax on restaurants is calculated on the floor area provided with air-conditioning facilities.
vi) The West Bengal Entertainment-cum-Amus ement Tax Act, 1982
The Act imposes taxes on four category of persons namely
a) owners of VCR/VCP sets who use it for commercial purpose ;
b) cable operators who distribute programmes through Cable Television Networks ;
c) sub-cable operators who receive signal from the cable operators and provide cable service to the customers ;
d) on the manufactures of C.T.V., V.C.D., V.C.R. etc. at first point.
While the rate of tax for the first category of owners is fixed at Rs. 250 per annum,
the second category of owners is liable to pay a weekly tax, the rate being dependent on the
capacity of the hall and the place of business. A monthly tax is being paid by the Cable Operators, the quantum of which depends on his monthly gross earning. The Sub-cable
Operators operating from Calcutta Metropolitan area required to pay an annual tax of rupees one thousand and five hundred only while the Sub-cable Operators in the districts are required to pay rupees one thousand only.
vii) The West Bengal Multi-storeyed Building Tax Act, 1979.
The present Act is the successor to the 1975 Act which was declared ultra vires to
the Constitution by the Honble High Court,Calcutta. The Act empowers the State Government to impose a tax on buildings consisting of five storeyes and above in West Bengal. However, tax is imposed only in Calcutta Metropolitan District, as described in the Schedule to the Calcutta Metropolitan Planning Areas (Use and Development of Land) Control Act, 1965.
The tax is calculated on the total covered space of the multi-storeyed building or part thereof. The rate of tax depends on the annual value of the covered space as determined by the municipality concerned.
The Act has been repealed with effect from the 1st April, 1999.
viii) The West Bengal Urban Land Taxation Act, 1976.
The Act envisaged to levy two taxes, viz., Land tax and Urban Land tax and
two charges, viz. Development charge and Conversion charge in urban area as listed in the Schedule to the Urban Land (Ceiling and Regulation) Act, 1976. While the two taxes are in vogue till 31.03.1999 necessary notifications for imposition of the Development and Conversion charges were not issued by the State Government.
Land tax is imposed upon the vacant land while urban land tax is imposed upon the quantity of land occupied by any building owned by any person as well as the land appurtenant to such building. The amount of tax varies according to the market value of the land.
The Act has been repealed with effect from the 1st April, 1999.
ix) The Bengal Electricity Duty Act, 1935 .
The Directorate of Electricity Duty came into existence with effect from 1.1.97. The
Commissioner, Agricultural Income Tax is also the Director of State Electricity Duty.
A part of the work of the Directorate, particularly relating to the assessment and collection of the electricity duty from the two most important licensees (WBSEB& CESC) have been entrusted to the officers of the Agricultural Income Tax Directorate. The Agricultural Income Tax Officers (A.I.T.O.) are required to make assessments of these two principal contributors of electricity duty. In respect of other licensees located in the districts, the power is vested both in the A.I.T.O.s and Deputy Magistrates duly authorised by the District Collector. The provision of assessment was introduced in the Act in the financial year 1996-97.
Details of other statutory works, particularly; those requiring technical knowledge, have been dealt; with in Part II of this report.