LIM TIAN HUAT v. KETUA PENGARAH HASIL DALAM NEGERI

HIGH COURT, KUALA LUMPUR
ABDUL HAMID MOHAMAD, JCA; MOHD NOOR AHMAD, JCA; P S GILL, JCA
RAYUAN SIVIL NO. W-01-17 OF 1997
[2002] 1 LNS 194
Counsel:
Bagi Pihak Perayu – Cik Shanti Mogan Encik Rajkumar Mathusuthanan
Bagi Pihak Responden – Encik Abu Tariq Jamaluddin Encik Muazmir Mohd. Yusof
CORAM: ABDUL HAMID MOHAMAD J.C.A.
MOHD. NOOR AHMAD J.C.A.
P.S. GILL J.C.A.
JUDGMENT
The Appellant (Plaintiff in the High Court) was appointed receiver and manager of Carah Enterprise Sdn. Bhd. (“the Company”) vide a Deed of Appointment dated 9th February 1994 executed by Perdana Merchant Bankers Berhad (“Perdana”). Notice of Appointment was given on 14th February 1994 by filing the requisite notice in Form 59 with the Registrar of Companies.
The appointment was pursuant to the provisions of the Deed of Debenture dated 30th June 1992. The debenture was executed by the Company as security for a term loan facility pursuant to a Facility Agreement dated 30th June 1992 in favour of Perdana in its capacity as agent for the syndicate lenders.
The Respondent (the Defendant in the High Court) is the Director General of the Inland Revenue Department, Federal Territory. The Respondent had caused to be issued to the Company a Notice of Assessment for the year of 1993; a Notification of Increase in Income Tax dated 31st January 1994 in which the income tax payable for the year of assessment 1993 was increased; Notice of Assessment for the year of assessment 1994 dated 28th December 1994 stating the income tax payable by the Company for the year of assessment 1994; and a Notification of Increase of Income Tax for the year of assessment 1994 dated 28th December 1994.
The Appellant filed an Originating Summons No. R1-24-34-1995 pursuant to section 183(3) of the Companies Act 1965 to seek directions of the Court in relation to the priority to be accorded to a claim by the Director General of Inland Revenue Department for payment of income tax which had become payable, or will become payable by the Company. The directions sought were, inter alia:
a. Whether there is an obligation placed on the Receiver & Manager by virtue of the Income Tax Act 1967 to set aside such sum out of the assets of the Company under receivership to provide for income tax payable or thereafter to be payable;
b. Whether payment of income tax is accorded, as a matter of law, priority in a receivership over the debt due to the Syndicate Lenders, over the Receivers & Managers expenses, and/or over the Receiver’s & Managers professional fees arising out of the performance of his duties; and
c. If income tax is accorded such priority, then what level of priority is to be accorded by the Receiver & Manager as compared to the other preferential debts specifically mentioned by a reading of sections 191 and 292 of the Companies Act 1965 or whether income tax takes precedence over all such preferential debts.
However, in the course of the hearing in the High Court, in transpired that only one issue had to be answered and that is: whether in a receivership federal tax has priority over payments to be made to the debenture holders.
The learned Judge decided in favour of the Respondent. He held that as the Company was under a receivership (as against a winding up) the question whether a federal tax is a preferential debt or not did not arise. Federal tax has to be paid in accordance with the relevant tax law. He therefore ruled that the Receiver and Manager should pay the federal tax first before making payments to the debenture holders. The learned Judge relied on Raja Arshad bin Raja Tun Uda & Anor v. Director-General of Inland Revenue [1990] 1 CLJ (Rep) 253; [1990] 1 CLJ 39; (1990) 1 MLJ 106 S.C. and Director of Customs, Federal Territory vLer Cheng Chye (Liquidator of Castwell Sdn. Bhd [1995] 3 CLJ 316., in Liquidation); (1995) 2 MLJ 600.
Perhaps, at this stage, for convenience, the relevant provisions of the Companies Act 1965 should be reproduced.
Section 191 provides:
“191.(1) where a receiver is appointed on behalf of the holders of any debentures of a company secured by a floating charge or possession is taken by or on behalf of debenture holders of any property comprised in or subject to a floating charge, then if the company is not at the time in the course of being wound up, debts which in every winding up are preferential debts and are due by way of wages salary vacation leave or superannuation or provident fund payments and any amount which in a winding up is payable in pursuance of section 292 (3) or (5) shall be paid out of any assets coming to the hands of the receiver or other person taking possession in priority to any claim for principal or interest in respect of the debentures and shall be paid in the same order of priority as is prescribed by that section in respect of those debts and amounts.
(2) For the purposes of subsection (1) the references in section 292 (1) (b), (c), (d) and (e) to the commencement of the winding up shall be read as a reference to the date of the appointment of the receiver or of possession being taken as aforesaid (as the case requires).
(3) Any payments made under this section shall be recouped as far as may be out of the assets of the company available for payment of general creditors.”
Section 292, inter alia, provides:
“292.(1)Subject to this Act, in a winding up there shall be paid in priority to all other unsecured debts-
a. firstly, the costs and expenses of the winding up including the taxed costs of a petitioner payable under section 220, the remuneration of the liquidator and the costs of any audit carried out pursuant to section 281;
b. secondly, all wages or salary (whether or not earned wholly or in part by way of commission) including any amount payable by way of allowance or reimbursement under any contract of employment or award or agreement regulating conditions of employment, of any employee not exceeding one thousand five hundred ringgit or such other amount as may be prescribed from time to time whether for time or piecework in respect of services rendered by him to the company within a period of four months before the commencement of the winding up;
c. thirdly, all amounts due in respect of worker’s compensation under any written law relating to worker’s compensation accrued before the commencement of the winding up;
d. fourthly, all remuneration payable to any employee in respect of vacation leave, or in the case of his death to any other person in his right, accrued in respect of any period before the commencement of the winding up;
e. fifthly, all amounts due in respect of contributions payable during the twelve months next before the commencement of the winding up by the company as the employer of any person under any written law relating to employees superannuation or provident funds or under any scheme of superannuation or retirement benefit which is an approved scheme under the federal law relating to income tax; and
f. sixthly, the amount of all federal tax assessed under any written law before the date of the commencement of the winding up or assessed at any time before the time fixed for the proving of debts has expired.
(2) The debts in each class specified in subsection (1) shall rank in the order therein specified but as between debts of the same class shall rank equally between themselves, and shall be paid in full, unless the property of the company is insufficient to meet them, in which case they shall abate in equal proportions between themselves.
(3) Where any payment has been made to any employee of the company on account of wages salary or vacation leave out of money advanced by a person for that purpose, the person by whom the money was advanced and paid, up to the amount by which the sum in respect of which the employee would have been entitled to priority in the winding up has been diminished by reason of the payment, and shall have the same right or priority in respect of that amount as the employee would have had if the payment had not been made.”
Reading these two sections, the first thing that strikes my mind is that nowhere do the two sections talk about priority of payment to debenture holders. Section 292 lists down the priorities in which federal tax ranks sixth. Payments to debenture holders is not one of them. Section 191, in essence, says that where a receiver is appointed not in the course of a winding up, debts which in every winding up are preferential debts and are due by way of wages, salary, vacation leave or superannuation or provident fund payments and any amount which in a winding up is payable in pursuance of section 292(3) or (5) shall be paid out in priority to any claim for principle or interest in respect of the debentures and shall be paid in the same order of priority as is prescribed by that section in respect of those debts and amounts. In other words, all those payments mentioned in section 191(1) shall be paid in priority to the claim in respect of debentures and they are to be paid in the order of priority as provided by section 292. But, federal tax is not one of the payments mentioned in section 191. So are claims in respect of debentures. What it means is that section 191 does not provide for priority as between the two. Of course, if the company is wound up, then federal tax ranks sixth, but claims in respect of debentures are not mentioned, meaning that such claims are not even in the list of priorities. So the only conclusion that can be arrived at, in the case of a winding up, federal tax has priority over claims in respect of debentures, because, though sixth in the order of priority, it is a priority while the claims in respect of debentures are not.
But, what is the position in the case of an appointment of a receiver, not being in the course of a winding up of the company?
I shall now look at the case law. I shall take them in chronological order.
In Re Golden Palace Musical Hall Sdn. Bhd.[1986] 1 LNS 126; (1988) 2 MLJ 634, the applicant was appointed a receiver of the company in question pursuant to powers contained in a debenture dated 5th November 1983 issued to Kwong Yik Bank Berhad. The receiver managed to recover from some insurance company a sum of RM295,000. The Department of Royal Customs and Excise claimed a sum of RM103,520 being arrears of service tax inclusive of penalty and late payments in priority to all other claims including the claim for principal and interest from the bank as debenture holder in the sum of RM560,480.00. Peh Swee Chin J (as he than was) held that the claim by the Department of Royal Customs & Excise must be paid first before the claim for the said principal and interest of the debenture holder i.e. the bank.
In the course of his judgment, the learned Judge referring to section 191 of the Companies’ Act 1965, said:
“The status of a federal tax as a preferential debt has thus been deliberately omitted from section 191, and would appear at first not to be such a preferential debt on the appointment of a receiver.”
I agree with that statement.
However, relying on section 52 of the Service Tax Act 1975 the learned Judge held that service tax has priority over claims by debenture holders. Section 52 of the Service Tax Act 1975, as it was then, provides:
“52. Where a receiver is appointed of the property of a person to whom a licence under section 8 is issued the receiver shall give notice thereof to the Director General within fourteen days after the appointment being made and shall before disposing of any of the assets of that person set aside such sum out of the assets as appears to the Director General to be sufficient to provide for any service tax that there is or will thereafter become payable in respect of the taxable service that have been provided or taxable goods that have been sold or provided by that person before the appointment of the receiver.”
Of that provision the learned Judge said:
“Section 52(1) is couched in peremptory language, such that the receiver must set aside, before disposing of any of the assets (the italics is mine), such sum as to be sufficient to pay for the service tax. To set aside must, in my view, necessarily imply that such sum set aside will have to be paid out to the said department.”
It is interesting to note that in spite of the decision in favour of the department, that section was amended by the Service Tax (Amendment) Act 1999 (Act A1060), by, inter alia, adding the words “and shall pay such service tax” at the end of subsection (1).
Raja Arshad (26th September 1989) is a decision of the Supreme Court. The facts and the decision are sufficiently summarised in the head note:
“In this case, the appellants had been appointed receivers and managers of a company which was indebted to a bank. The appellants’ predecessors as receivers and managers had sold the only asset of a company, a landed property. The total purchase price had been paid to the receivers. The respondents, the Director-General of Inland Revenue, claimed payment of real property gains tax. The appellants applied to the High Court for directions and the learned judge of the High Court held that the respondents were entitled to the amount claimed. The appellants appealed.
Held, dismissing the appeal:
The purchaser of the property in this case who was the acquirer under s 2 of the Real Property Gains Tax Act 1976 was statutorily bound to retain the sum payable by the company as real property gains tax until the acquirer receives the certificate of clearance under the Act and as the acquirer had not complied with what it was statutorily bound to do under the Act and had instead passed the whole amount of the purchase price to the receivers, the receivers had received a sum part of which they ought not to have received. The respondent was entitled to the sum being the amount of tax payable on the disposal of the land property. As far as the tax is concerned, the question of priority does not arise.”
It is to be noted that section 21B(1)(a) of the Real Property Gains Tax Act 1976 relied on by the Supreme Court in arriving at the conclusion that it did, provides:
“21B(1) Where on a disposal to which s 13 applies, the consideration consists wholly or partly of money.
(a) the acquirer shall, until he receives the Director-General’s certificate of clearance under s 21A, retain the whole of that money (subject to the reservation that the money retained shall not exceed a sum calculated at the rate at which the tax is for the time being chargeable, on the total value of the consideration).”
Hashim Yeop A. Sani, C.J. (Malaya) delivering the judgment of the Court explains:
“There is no real lacuna in the law. In a winding up, federal tax ranks sixth as preferential debt as referred to earlier, i.e. by virtue of s 292(1) of the Companies Act 1965. Where, however, there is no winding up and a receiver and manager is appointed as in this case, the federal tax is to be paid in accordance with the taxing statute concerned.
It is not therefore a question of whether the federal tax is a preferential debt. It is only a question of how and when that tax becomes payable and should be paid by the company being the ‘chargeable’ person under the Act.”
In Anuarul Aini & Anor v. Ketua Pengarah Kastam dan Eksais Diraja, Malaysia, Johore Bharu[1991] 2 CLJ 278 (Rep) [1991] 1 CLJ 495; (1991) 1 MLJ James Foong J. considered the provision of section 70 of the Sales Tax Act 1972, which, in so far as it is maternal, is identical to the provision of section 52 of the Service Tax Act 1975. The learned Judge held that section 70 standing on its own does not provide a priority payment to sales tax. The learned Judge referred to Re Golden Palace, but, with respect, his view of that judgment is unclear. He, however, found that “sales tax being a debt owed to the government ranks in priority over the fixed charge of the debenture holders”, relying on section 10 of the Government Proceedings Ordinance 1956. No reference was made to Raja Arshad.
[This case (Anuarul Aini) went on appeal to the Supreme Court and was “summarily upheld” see Kenneth Teh Ah Kian & Anor. (Receivers and managers of Global Pacific Textile Industries Sdn. Bhd., in receivership) v. Ketua Pengarah Kastam & Eksais & Ors [1994] 3 CLJ 772,; (1998) 1 M.L.J 289, 297 (F.C.)].
In the following year (1992) in Ler Leng Chye Liquidator of Casterwell Sdn. Bhd. (In Liquidation) (1992) 2 C.L.J. 1019 Zakaria M. Yatim J (as he then was) had the occasion to consider the provision of section 69 of the Sales Tax Act 1972, which, in so far as it is material, is identical in wording with section 70 of that Act. The learned Judge followed the view of James Foong J. in Annuarul Aini regarding the effects of section 70 of the Act on priority i.e. it “does not confer priority rights over other things.”
Again Raja Arshad was not referred to by the learned Judge.
On appeal (see (1995) 2 MLJ 600) the Supreme Court held that section 69 of the Sales Tax Act 1972 was directive in nature and merely directs the setting aside of moneys sufficient for taxation, but does not provide that Government debts shall rank in priority to all other secured debts. The case being a winding up case, the Supreme Court held that the proper provisions to apply in deciding the priority of payments in respect of the sales tax debt were sections 291 and 292 of the Companies Act 1965.
I do not think that I have to discuss Global Pacific Textile Industrias Sdn. Bhd. (In receivership) v. Ketua Pengarah Jabatan Kastam dan Eksais & Ors (1994) 3 MLJ 175, as it was decided prior to the Supreme Court decision in Ler Cheng Chye and as it was also a winding-up case.
The issue regarding the priority of sales tax was considered again by the Federal Court in Abdul Samad bin Hj. Alias v. the Government of Malaysia & Ors.[1996] 4 CLJ 123; (1996) 3 MLJ 581. In that case the appellant was appointed by the United Asian Bank as the receiver and manager of Rajiv Enterprises Sdn. Bhd. pursuant to the terms of a debenture. On the issue of sales tax, the government claimed that they were entitled to priority by reason of section 70 of the Sales Tax Act 1972 or section 10 of the Government Proceedings Act 1956. The Federal Court held:
“Held, allowing the appeal”
1. It must now be regarded as settled that ss 69 and 70 of the 1972 Act do not operate to confer any priority for sales tax over other debts and that s 292(1) of the 1965 Act must be read as an exception to the general provisions of s 10(1) of the 1956 Act (see p 591F), Director of Customs, Federal Territory v Ler Cheng Chye (Liquidator of Castwell Sdn. Bhd, in liquidation)[1995] 3 CLJ 316; [1995] 2 MLJ 600 followed.
2. It is erroneous to say that the provisions of ss 191 and 292 of the 1965 Act do not apply. Once a receiver has been appointed, ss 191 and 292 will come into play. Whilst it is true that a taxable person collects the sales tax for the government, the government cannot claim priority over such monies once a receiver has been appointed. The argument will be tenable only if the monies collected by Rajiv as sales tax were put into a separate special account. But, there is no evidence that monies collected as sales tax were put into such an account. They must have been put into the mixed account of Rajiv (see pp 5911 and 592A-B).”
It is not for me to comment on the reasons given in the last three sentences quoted above. It is also not for me or this court to disagree with the decision of the Supreme Court that sections 69 and 70 of the Sales Tax Act 1972 do not operate to confer priority for sales tax over other debts. I also have no problem agreeing that once a receiver has been appointed sections 191 and 292 come into play. But, that statement must be understood to mean that section 292 applies in so far as it is provided by section 191. In other words, in a section 191 situation, section 292 is only applicable to debts specifically mentioned in section 191 and federal tax is not one of them.
In the following year, the Federal Court decided the case of Kenneth Teh Ah Kian & Anor (Receivers and Managers of Global pacific Textile Industrias Sdn. Bhd. in receivership) v. Ketua Pengarah Jabatan Kastam dan Eksais & Ors (1998) 1 MLJ 289. The appellants were appointed by the debenture holders as receivers and managers of the debtor company. The value of realizable assets in their hands, including the value of goods seized by the customs department under the Sales Tax Act 1972 prior to the date of crystallization of the debentures, were insufficient to meet all the claims of the debenture holders, the Director General of Cusotms & Excise, the Employees Provident Fund Board and their own claims of professional fees and expenses incurred in the receivership. The respondents had claimed priority of payment under the relevant provisions of the Customs Act 1967, the Sales Tax Act, 1972 the Employees Provident Fund Act 1991 and under section 10 of the Government Proceedings Act 1956. On the contrary the appellants relied on section 191 read together with section 292(1) of the Companies Act 1965 to claim for higher priorities for their own professional costs and expenses of receivership as well debts due to the debenture holders.
“Held, allowing the appeal in part:
1. The provision of s 292 of the Companies Act 1965 must necessarily prevail over the provision of s 10 of the GPA on priority of payment in a liquidation situation, and the same applied to a receivership situation by virtue of s 191 of the Companies Act 1965 (see p 300H); Director of Customs, Federal Territory v Ler Cheng Chye (Liquidator of Castwell Sdn. Bhd. in liquidation) [1995] 3 CLJ 316; [1995] 2 MLJ 600 and Abdul Samad bin Hj. Alias v The Government of Malaysia & Ors [1996] 4 CLJ 123; [1996] 3 MLJ 581 followed.
2. Sections 23, 69 and 70 of the STA have nothing at all to do with the issue of priority of payment. Thus, unless s 10 of the GPA is successfully brought into operation, there is nothing in the STA itself to confer any priority of payment to the unsecured debts due to the federal government. Since it was conceded that s 10 of the GPA had no application, federal tax assessed under the STA could not claim overall priority of payment without contravening s 292(1) priorities. Similarly, there is nothing in ss 11 and 65 of the CA to give priority of payment of customs duties as unsecured debts to the government. Again, the inability to invoke s 10 of the GPA would cripple the respondent’s case. As such, the priority of payment in respect of federal taxes assessed under any written law must rank in accordance with s 292(1) of the Companies Act 1965. In the circumstances, the trial judge erred in law in directing the customs duties and the sales taxes leviable against the debtor company to have priority of payment over debts due to the debenture holders and the receiver’s costs and expenses (see pp 300I and 301A-E).
3. Section 51 of the EPF Act has nothing to do with priority of payment in a receivership or liquidation of a company. There is nothing in the EPF Act itself to give priority of payment to the EPF Board. On the contrary, s 191(1) of the Companies Act 1965 itself confers priority to EPF contributions payable by the employer over any claim of the debenture holders. In the circumstances, the EPF contributions in the present appeal must necessarily fall under s 292(1)(e) of the Companies Act 1965 for purpose of priority over all other unsecured debts in the event where there is insufficiency of realizable assets in the floating charge to meet all claims. Since EPF contributions are expressly included for priority purposes under s 191(1), there is no reason why such contributions should be excluded form s 292(1) unless expressly so provided by Parliament. In the circumstances, as far as the claim of the EPF board was concerned, the order of the trial judge should be set aside on the ground that the contributions under the EPF Act payable by the debtor company do not have priority over the receivers’ cost and expenses under s 292(1) of the Companies Act 1965, although they do have priority of payment over debts due to the debenture holders in respect of principal or interest under the debentures see p 302C-G).”
So, with regard to sales tax, even where there are provisions as in sections 23, 69 and 70, the Federal Court in Kenneth Teh Ah Kian held that such provisions have nothing to do with the issue of priority of payment and the federal tax assessed under the Sales Tax Act 1972 cannot claim priority over claims by debenture holders. An exception is where section 10 of the Government Proceedings Act 1972 “is successfully brought into operation.” It should be noted that in that case (Kenneth Teh Ah Kian) that section did not apply.
Again, surprisingly, no reference was made to RajaArshad, a judgment of the Supreme Court where a similar provision in the Real Property Gains Tax Act 1976 was in issue.
However, I must confess that I find it difficult to understand this passage of the judgment in Kenneth Teh Ah Kian at page 298:
“The principle on priority of payment in Ler Cheng Chye was thus extended and applied to a receivership situation by Abdul Samad by virtue of section 191 read together with s 292 of the Companies Act 1965……”
in regard to federal taxes.
And also this passage at page 301:
“Under s 292(1) read with s 191 of the Companies’ Act 1965, the customs duties and sales taxes in the form of government taxes would rank sixth in terms of priority of payment to all other unsecured debts.”
As I understand it, if a company is wound up, then federal taxes ranks sixth in priority by virtue of section 292(1). That is clearly provided for. But, where a receiver and manager is appointed not in the course of a winding up under section 191, the preferential debts enumerated in section 191 do not include federal taxes. True that section 191 is to be read with section 292. But to what extent? It can only be to the extent provided by section 191, i.e. in regard to the preferential debts mentioned therein the ranking of which will be as provided in section 292. But where section 191 excludes a particular debt, the ranking regarding it as provided in 292 simply cannot apply. There is nothing to apply to. Note that even subsection (2) of section 191 which makes specific reference to paragraphs (b), (c), (d) and (e) of section 292(1) omits paragraph (f) which is federal tax.
In this respect, if I have a choice, I would prefer the view of Hashim Yeop A. Sani C.J. (Malaya) in Raja Arshad when, delivering the judgment of the Supreme Court, at page 107:
“In a winding up, federal tax ranks sixth as preferential debt………. by virtue of s 292(1) of the Companies Act 1965. Where, however, there is no winding up and a receiver and manager is appointed as in this case, the federal tax is to be paid in accordance with the taxing statute concerned.”
In other words, in respect of federal tax, where a receiver and manager is appointed under section 191, section 292 does not come into play because federal tax is not a preferential debt under section 191. That, in my view and with respect, is the correct position.
It is hoped that this case will give the Federal Court another opportunity to look at the provisions of sections 191 and 292 again in respect of federal tax and in view of the fact that Raja Arshad appears to have escaped the notice of the Federal Court when deciding Abdul Samad and Kenneth Teh Ah Kian.
Coming back to the present appeal. The debt here is income tax, a federal tax. It is not one of the preferential debts provided under section 191. So, the ranking provided in section 292 cannot come into play. So sections 191 and 292 cannot be relied on to give priority to federal tax over claims in respect of debentures.
Following Raja Arshad, indeed, the Federal Court in Abdul Samad and Kenneth Teh Ah Kian did the same, I shall now look at the taxing statute concerned, i.e. the Income Tax Act 1967. Section 103 of the Income Tax Act 1967 provides:
“103(1) Subject to this section, tax payable under an assessment or a composite assessment shall on the service of the notice of assessment or composite assessment on the person assessed be due and payable at the place specified in that notice, whether or not that person appeals against the assessment.” (emphasis added).
All it says is that the tax assessed, upon the service of the notice of assessment, becomes due and payable. How is it to be recovered? The most common method is provided by section 106.
“106.(1) Tax due and payable may be recovered by the Government by civil proceedings as a debt due to the Government.”
True that in any proceeding for the recovery of the tax assessed the court shall not entertain any plea that the amount of the tax sought to be recovered is excessive, incorrectly assessed, under appeal or incorrectly increased section 106(3). That is because there is a different forum for such challenges. But, the fact remains that the tax only becomes due and payable upon service of the notice of assessment. That is all. It has nothing to do with priority.
This provision is even weaker than section 69 or 70 of the Sales Tax Act 1972 which have been held by the Federal Court in Abdul Samad and Kenneth Teh AhKian as not having created a priority. Even if Raja Arshad is still good law, the provision of section 103 of the Income Tax Act 1967 is nowhere near or similar to the provisions of section 21B(1)(a) of the Real Property Gains Tax Act 1976.
So, in my view, the respondent cannot rely on section 103 of the Income Tax Act 1967 to claim priority.
I do not think I have to discuss the effects of section 10 of the Government Proceedings Act 1956 as the Respondents did not rely on it. Even the learned Judge did not touch on it in his grounds of judgment. I believe the reason is that, as stated by learned counsel for the appellant, it is not applicable.
In the circumstances I hold that the income tax due to the Respondent has no priority over the claims of the debenture holders. The appeal should be allowed with costs here and in the court below and the deposit to be refunded.
Both my learned brothers, Mohd. Noor Ahmad J.C.A. and P.S. Gill J.C.A., have read this judgment in draft and have expressed their agreement.
5th November, 2002.
(DATO’ ABDUL HAMID BIN HAJI MOHAMAD)
Hakim Mahkamah Rayuan
Kuala Lumpur.
Bagi Pihak Perayu – Cik Shanti Mogan
Encik Rajkumar Mathusuthanan
Messrs Shearn Delamore & Co.
Bagi Pihak Responden – Encik Abu Tariq Jamaluddin
Encik Muazmir Mohd. Yusof
Pegawai Undang-Undang
Lembaga Hasil Dalam Negeri

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