July 27, 2021 3:36:16 pm
A division bench of the Madras High Court comprising Justices S Duraisamy and R Hemalatha Tuesday stayed the judgment of a single bench which had passed critical remarks against actor Vijay and imposed on him a fine of Rs one lakh for filing a petition seeking exemption from paying entry tax on his Rolls Royce Ghost car imported from England in 2012.
The high court had Thursday granted permission to the Tamil actor to challenge the order of the single bench and expunge its scathing remarks against him.
Senior advocate Vijay Narayan, who appeared on behalf of the actor Tuesday, said Vijay was ready to pay the tax amount and there was no justification for the adverse comments. He said similar cases were dismissed by the bench, but adverse comments were made only on the plea moved by the actor. He added that such remarks could hurt any human being.
“The learned judge has cast aspersions on me (Actor Vijay) by labelling him as an anti-national and has cast aspersions on the whole acting community. Out of 500 other similar petitions involving luxury cars, some even costlier, the case of Vijay cannot be picked out alone,” Narayan told the bench according to Live Law.
“The adverse remarks created a negative publicity. This can be hurtful to any person,” he further submitted.
The division bench then directed Vijay to pay 80 per cent of the entry tax within a week of receiving a new demand notice from the commercial tax department.
Two weeks ago, Justice S M Subramaniam had dismissed the actor’s plea, observing that tax evasion is an “anti-national habit, attitude and mindset and unconstitutional.” The court added that a person paying tax punctually and promptly would be the real hero.
Highlighting that the system of taxation is the backbone of the nation’s economy, he said tax is a mandatory contribution and not a voluntary payment or donation.
“These actors portray themselves as champions to bring social justice in the society and their pictures are against corrupt activities in the society. But, they are evading tax and acting in a manner, which is not in consonance with the provisions of the statutes,” Justice Subramaniam had said in his order, adding that rich, affluent and reputed persons fail to pay tax while the common man is encouraged to behave as a lawful citizen.
Reminding the actor to respect the sentiments of millions of his fans who watch his movies by paying for the tickets, the court had said: “The reputed persons of this great nation should realize that the money (which) reaches to them is from the poor man’s blood and from their hard-earned money and not from the sky.”
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