Three-judge bench upheld computer and operational software are different
Indian PC manufacturers have another good news to cheer for. Supreme Court
has ruled that no excise duty is payable on software loaded on computers. The
Excise Department had argued that operational software was part of the PC and
therefore duty should be paid on the total value of the computer.
The apex court also rejected suggestions from the Department that PCs with
license software should not be compared with a disc, floppy or CD-ROM available
in the market separately.
The three-judge bench hea-ded by Justice Santosh Hegde, which upheld the
appeal by Acer India and other PC makers, explained that computer and
operational software are dif-ferent marketable commo-dities. The excise duty on
com-puters is 16 percent whereas that on the software is nil.