Actress Anushka Sharma has moved court against what she feels is an inflated tax notice.
The actor had approached the Bombay High Court challenging two orders passed by. The Deputy Commissioner of sales tax dues for 2012-13 and 2013-14.
A bench of Justices Nitin Jamder and Abhay Ahuja today directed the Sales Tax Department to respond to his appeal. They will take up the case on February 6.
Anushka Sharma requested the court to quash the sales tax department’s order, arguing that she has to pay tax as a performer. He believes that the tax authorities have assessed him at a higher rate than applies to an actor or performer.
The actor filed four petitions between 2012 and 2016. He filed the fresh petition last week after the High Court in December refused to entertain his tax consultant’s plea challenging the tax order.
The High Court noted, “there was no reason why the aggrieved person (Anushka) could not have filed the petition herself”.
Anushka Sharma argues that she acted in films and at award shows as part of a tripartite agreement. With her agent, Yashraj Films, and the producers and event organisers.
He was, however, taxed for product endorsements and anchoring award functions, not as a film actor, he pointed out. The appeal stated that the tax department assumed that he had transferred his performance rights.
He was asked to pay Rs 1.2 crore in 2012-13 and the following year, he received a notice of Rs 1.6 crore.
His petition stated that the Assessing Officer wrongly held that by endorsing. The products and participating in the award function he acquired the copyright and sold them.
The copyright of the videos always remains with the producer, who owns them, the petition states.
“Until it is established that there is sale of goods (tangible or intangible), sales tax cannot be levied,” the actor said.
An actor who has played a role in a film cannot be called the creator or producer of the film and therefore does not own the copyright of the film, says Anushka Sharma.
If the sales tax department believes that he has transferred his performer’s rights, he must mention to whom he has sold the rights, the plea said.
“The actor’s right is to protect the interest of the actor and not for transfer or sale,” the actor said in his petition.
He also said that he could not file an appeal with the appellate authority until he paid 10 percent of the disputed tax.
Anushka Sharma, who is married to cricketer Virat Kohli, is known for films like ‘PK’, ‘Rab Ne Bana Di Jodi’, ‘Sultan’ and ‘Zero’.